Here I am, sitting with my friends, on the train to Hogwarts. This is our fourth year at Hogwarts. The last three years with my friends have gone by so fast! We've had our exciting and dangerous adventures. We've almost gotten killed a few times, but I love the adrenaline rush that happens whenever we're in danger. It's like being brave and afraid at the same time. I'm brave because I'm not afraid for my life, but I'm afraid for others' lives. Like my three best friends, Harry Potter, Hermione Granger, and Ron Weasley. I discovered in our first year at Hogwarts that the danger and excitement has just begun, here at Hogwarts, School of Witchcraft and Wizardry. Maybe I should introduce myself. My name is Chrislynn Godrick. I am also known as The Girl Who Lived. Let me explain.
I was born in my hometown, Boston, Massachusetts, in the USA. My birthday is July 31st, same as Harry's. When I was just a baby, my parents decided that they would like to move. Across the sea, that is. We moved to England when I was about ten months old. It was very random and surprising, so I was told. My Uncle George lives in England. He's not actually my uncle, really, he's my mother's half-brother. He told me that he did not expect the move. They didn't even call to tell him. We just showed up on his doorstep needing somewhere to sleep. Uncle George said that they told him that it was "urgent" and they didn't have time to explain what they meant.
So, we lived happily for a few months. We got our own apartment. My parents got part-time jobs. We lived happily, until that night. I remember how confused I was. I remember everything.
My mother, Lisa, didn't come home from work that night. My father, Richard, called her phone many times. He called her work phone number. She didn't answer her phone and her co-workers said she left hours ago. She should've been home. My father grew very scared and nervous. I didn't know why. I didn't know anything. I couldn't do or say anything to make my father feel better or to bring my mother back home. I felt scared for the first time in my life.
My father grew so anxious, that he was sweating. And I didn't know why. I had no idea. He called the babysitter. I remember her, too. She was young and very pretty. All she needed was to earn money for a new car. That's all she wanted. She didn't expect this. I didn't expect this. No one did. While we were waiting for the babysitter to arrive, my father took me into his arms and kissed me on the forehead. He said he loved me and my mother very much. The babysitter came and my father gave her the emergency phone numbers, the key to the house, and a quick explanation. "I'm sorry this was so sudden, but this is an emergency. If I don't come back in a few hours, call the police. Then call this number," he said as he pointed to Uncle George's number.
"But, where are you going?" the babysitter asked as he ran to the door.
"To find my wife," he replied.
The babysitter looked at me like I had an explanation, but I didn't. She looked at the emergency phone numbers like she hoped they would make it all better. I cried for my father. In the back of my mind, I knew that something was wrong. But I couldn't say anything. After all, I was only about 18 months old.
The babysitter fed me, played with me, and put me to sleep. How could I sleep when I knew that something was wrong? So, I tossed and turned. Finally, I gave up and stood up in my crib. I cried for the babysitter. She came and talked to me like I knew what she was saying. I understood a few words, like "scared" and "father" and "call". She placed me back in my crib and got the phone. She took the piece of paper with the emergency numbers on it as I watched from my crib. I looked out the window. It was pitch black. My babysitter was tired. I was tired, but couldn't sleep. The whole town was silent. Then I knew. My father should be back with my mother. It's been a while since he left. The babysitter called a number, talked on the phone for a little, and called another number. A little while after, the police arrived, along with Uncle George. Finally, a face I recognized and loved. I reached my arms out to him and he took me in his arms.
"Everything will be alright." he told me.
Did I believe him? No. Not for a second. The babysitter talked to the police. She told them how my father left without much of an explanation. She told them how he said he was going to find his wife. Uncle George and I listened. Well, he listened. I couldn't understand much. Uncle George told me this years after. The police said they would search for my parents. Uncle George told them about places they might be. After the babysitter told the police everything she knew, they said she could go. Uncle George said he would take care of me until my parents were found.
And that's where I've been for years. Uncle George is my family. His home is mine. My parents were found, in the forest, hours after the police started their search. My mother looked as if nothing touched her, but she was clearly dead. She was in my father's arms and he had a gun in his hands. The gunshot wound was in his forehead, blood streaming down his face. My father committed suicide. That much is obvious. The mystery is how my mother died. Heart attack? Not likely. Why would she be in the forest? Besides, she was completely healthy and happy. They say that her heart just stopped. I don't think so. Uncle George told me his theory. Actually, it's more than a theory. It's an explanation. A good one. He says that my mother was killed.
"With what?" I had asked him after he told me he had a theory.
"With magic." he answered. Like his answer wasn't totally absurd.
"You're joking." I said.
"No, I'm not. I'm serious. Magic." he said.
"Magic…?" I repeated.
"Yes, magic." he said.
"Explain." I said.
I was only ten years old. How was I supposed to believe him? I didn't know magic even existed then. This is when he told me. About our family. About wizards and witches.
"Well, you know that I am your mother's half-brother, right?" Uncle George asked.
"Yes. Mother's father married your mother after she had you from another marriage. Then a couple years after, they had Mother."
"That's right. Precisely." he said.
"And…?" I asked.
"And… my Mum's family are all witches and wizards. Your Mum was a witch. But your father is a Muggle, " he said.
"What's a Muggle?" I asked.
"Someone who doesn't have any magical powers of any kind. Follow?" he asked.
"Yes. Go on." I replied.
"The magic passed on to you. You are a witch." he said.
"I'm a WHAT?" I exclaimed.
"You heard me. A witch. And a powerful one." He said.
"What? How? Explain, please!" I said.
"This goes back to my theory about your Mum's death. There is this very powerful wizard out there. He's very, very dangerous and far more powerful than you or any other wizard. He calls himself Lord Voldemort." he said.
"You think he killed my mother?" I asked.
"Yes. I'm glad you're still following." he said.
"So… how did he kill her? With magic?" I asked.
"Why would a wizard bother to kill someone in a non-magic way?" he asked.
"Sorry, I'm new to this!" I replied.
"Well, anyway-" he started to say. But I cut him off.
"So, wait, are you a wizard?" I asked.
"Er… I'll get to that after." he said.
"Okay, go on." I said.
"The police found no physical damage on your Mum because Voldemort used a spell. Spells like the one he used won't show any physical damage. I believe he used a particular spell that would kill one in an instant. No damage, no evidence. Quick." he said.
"Harsh." I replied.
"Yes, very. And I'm sure your mum and dad knew that Voldemort would come looking for them in America, so they came here. That failed miserably. Voldemort knew they moved, came back here, and hunted you down. I think your mum knew he was coming and decided to lead him away from your home. Your father came looking for her and died anyway."
"Oh." I said. I had nothing else to say.
"I have something else to tell you," he said. I didn't say anything. He continued, "You don't remember what I'm about to tell you because he put a spell on you."
"Who put what spell on me?" I asked, perplexed.
"Voldemort put a spell on you that made you forget." he replied.
"Forget what? And how do you know?" I asked.
"Voldemort came back to your house after everyone left. I left you alone for just a few minutes. But that's all he needed. He arrived and tried to kill you. He almost succeeded."
"But, he didn't?" I asked.
"No, he didn't. Otherwise, you wouldn't be here. He tried the same spell he used on your Mum. Miraculously, it didn't work. It bounced off you and hit him. It didn't kill him, unfortunately. I think you took some of his power away and the spell was weakened. He was stunned for a second. I saw him. I saw the spell hit him and stun him. I couldn't do anything. I was such a coward." he said.
"You're not a coward, Uncle George." I said.
"Yes, I am! You don't know…! Forget it. But, the point is, he got away. He left you with nothing but that scar." he said as he pointed to the scar on the left side of my forehead, covered by my bangs. It's shaped like a lightning bolt. I always thought that stitches caused it. I was told that I fell down some hard stairs and hit my head. I even got temporary amnesia. Or at least, that's what I thought.
"So, he just got away after he was stunned?" I had asked.
"Er, yes. He did. He escaped. I could've stopped him! But, I was a coward. I still am a coward." Uncle George answered.
"You are not a coward!" I exclaimed.
"You asked if I'm a wizard?" he asked, changing the subject.
"Yes. Aren't you?" I asked.
"Er, yes. Yes, I am a wizard. But I haven't actually performed any spell in years."
"Because I'm a coward!" He exclaimed.
"Go on." I said.
"A few years ago, I decided I did not want to be a wizard. I promised myself that I wouldn't use magic ever again. I thought that it was too dangerous and Lord Voldemort proved it! There are many dangerous things out there in this world, Chris." He said.
"I know there are dangerous things. I'm not afraid." I said.
"Chris, please do not make the mistake I made when my Mum told me that I am a wizard." he said.
"What did you do?" I asked.
"I wasn't careful. I didn't plan anything I did, I caused trouble all the time, I got myself hurt many times, and I learned my lesson." He replied, counting with his fingers.
"And what was that?" I asked.
"To be more responsible. So, I told myself I would forget about magic until I really, really needed it. For an emergency. I can't make any more mistakes. I've already made major mistakes that affected my life… and your's." he said.
"What are you talking about?" I asked, surprised.
He sighed again.
"I'm the one that got you into this mess." he said.
"What do you mean?" I asked.
"I'm the one that caused Voldemort to come after you and your parents." he said.
I was speechless. How could he, my sweet Uncle George, get wrapped up in a guy like Voldemort's schemes?
"I… I'm sure you didn't mean to do anything like that. Right?" I asked.
"No, of course not. That's my point. It was a mistake. It was all a big mistake that I made." he said.
"What did you do now?" I asked, jokingly.
"This is not something to joke about!" he exclaimed.
"Okay, sorry! No more jokes." I said.
"I made a horrible, terrible mistake," he said.
"Tell me already!" I said. The suspense was killing me.
"Okay. Well, I was just a young lad - about 19 - when Voldemort noticed how tricky I was as a child. I was always playing tricks on everyone, using magic, of course. He asked me to join him and his friends. He said that they were 'just a bunch of tricksters who like to play jokes on everyone'. It sounded good to me at the time. Well, he tricked me. They were really bad wizards. They didn't play jokes. They killed and stole. They were criminals. And I was one. After a year or so, I realized that I didn't want to be a criminal. I didn't want to be on the Wanted List. I wanted to go back to my family. I wanted to see my Mum and Dad again and see my little sister - your Mum - grow up and live happily. So, I turned myself in. I turned Voldemort and all the other evil wizards in to the Ministry of Magic. The Minister of Magic is like the President of the United States. Only British," he said.
"Hey, I thought we weren't making jokes?" I asked. I saw a flicker of a smile, but it disappeared as soon as he became serious again.
"No, you're right. No jokes. Anyway, the Ministry of Magic decided what to do with them and they set me free for turning them in. Voldemort and the others were put in Azkaban. Azkaban is the prison for wizards and witches," he said.
"Happy ending, right?" I asked hopefully.
"No, unfortunately not. They escaped. And they came looking for me. They knew I turned them in and wanted revenge. They didn't kill me. But it would've been much better than what they did do to me." Uncle George said.
"What? What could be worse?" I asked.
"Voldemort put a curse on me. He said I would watch my family suffer until he got what he wanted," he said.
"What did he want?" I asked.
"I don't know. I thought he wanted me dead, so I offered my life as soon as I could. But he declined. He said he didn't want me dead. He never told me what he wants. So, my family continues to suffer. My parents were poisoned. No one else knew how or who did it, but I did. I knew that Voldemort kept his promise. They died. Your Mum and Dad were killed, again, courtesy of Voldemort." he said.
"Oh. But, nothing has happened to me." I pointed out.
"Yet," he replied
"Yet," I repeated.
So far, Uncle George had told me that I'm a witch with magical powers, my parents were killed, and my life is in danger because some psycho is after me. That's a lot to take in one day. But he wasn't done yet.
"You've been safe and sound all these years. And I think it's because of what I did." he continued.
"You're saying that you think I've been safe because you accidentally caused some evil, wacko wizard to hate our family and kill us all?" I asked.
"No, that's definitely not what I'm saying!" he exclaimed.
"Then what are you talking about?" I had asked.
"You didn't let me explain! As soon as I knew that your Mum was having you, I came up with a plan. And it worked so far! You see, what I did was, I took you to see an old sorceress when you were just a newborn. I told her of the curse Voldemort put on our family. She counteracted the curse and you've been safe ever since." he said.
"You're joking," I said.
"No, I'm not!" he said.
"An old sorceress? C'mon like I'm gonna believe that!" I exclaimed.
It took me a few minutes to realize that I did believe him. I had to after all the things he has told me over the years. I never believed in unicorns before he told me any of it. And guess what. I've seen a unicorn. Can you believe it?
Uncle George took me to see a lot of things of the wizard/witch world. I saw Gringott's Bank, which is run by goblins. Goblins! I've been to Diagon Alley, which is where a lot of stores are located. Uncle George took me there to buy my first wand! He taught me how to use it and he taught me many useful spells. He said that he taught me everything he knew, which is almost every single spell ever!
And to make everything even cooler, Uncle George said that I'm one of the best witches in the world! How great is that? He says no wizard or witch of my age can do what I can do. I can use magic without a wand whenever I want!
He also told me about the school that I go to now, Hogwarts. He told me about the people I'll meet there such as the headmaster, Professor Dumbledore, who is a powerful wizard. He told me about Harry Potter, the Boy Who Lived.
"Why is he called the Boy Who Lived?" I asked.
"The same reason why you are called the Girl Who Lived." he answered.
"I have a nickname, too?" I asked.
"Yes, you and Harry Potter's parents have been killed by Voldemort and you have both been almost killed by him. You two are the only people who have survived the Killing Curse," he said.
"So, there's someone like me?" I asked.
"Not exactly. He's supposedly a great wizard, too, but not as good as you. And he survived not because he is naturally a great wizard, he survived because of his parents' love. His parents died for him. As did yours, but you did not need the love they gave. Lisa and Richard were very lucky to have you. You are a natural-born legend. You are naturally a great witch." he said.
"Oh. Interesting," I said.
I couldn't wait to meet him. At least I would make one friend at Hogwarts, I had thought to myself.
Turns out, I made more than one friend at Hogwarts.
I had left Uncle George at Platform Nine and Three-quarters to board the Hogwarts Express. I told him I would write to him and that I would miss him. I noticed that people were staring at me at the Train Station. Uncle George warned me about that. He said I'm a celebrity in the magical world. I was only 11, and I only knew about all this magic stuff for a year.
I stepped onto the train and the attention was turned to me. I waved, hoping I looked confident. I could hear whispers all around me.
"There she is! The Girl Who Lived!"
"She's even more beautiful than I imagined!"
"Is it true that she can do magic without a wand?"
"Mum was right!"
"My Mum said I shouldn't feel insecure around her."
I laughed at that last one. Me? Beautiful and confident? Ha! I would never describe myself like that!
I met my first best friend when I was looking for somewhere to sit. No one offered me a seat. They just stared at me and didn't say a word. All the seats had at least one person in it. I was coming towards the end of the train - which was very long, to my surprise - until I heard someone clear their throat in a seat next to me. I looked over and saw a boy that looked my age.
"You can sit here. With me. In this seat. Er, if you want." he mumbled.
"Sure, thanks!" I replied.
I sat down next to him. I saw a scar peeking through his hair on his forehead. It was shaped like a lightning bolt.
"Hey, are you Harry Potter? You know, the Boy Who Lived?" I asked.
"Yeah, how did you know?" He asked.
"Well, I saw the scar on your forehead." I said.
"Oh. Right. I forgot how much of a celebrity I am." He said.
"I know what you mean," I said, between giggles. "I have the same scar." I said.
I lifted up my bangs to show him. His eyes lit up.
"Oh! You are Chrislynn Godrick, right? Wow. I mean, Hagrid told me about you," he said.
"Yeah, that's me. And who is Hagrid?" I asked.
"Oh, you'll meet him at Hogwarts." he replied.
"Okay. So, um, how are you taking this whole famous thing?" I asked.
"It's kind of awkward. Every time I look up, someone is staring at me." he said.
"That's exactly how I feel!" I exclaimed.
"You're not from around here, are you?" he asked.
"No. I'm from the United States." I replied.
"That's cool. I've never been there," he said.
"Maybe I'll take you there sometime. I'll show you my hometown," I said.
"You would do that? You really are as nice as people say you are," he said.
"What exactly do people say about me?" I asked.
"They say you're smart, kind, beautiful, powerful, confident, etcetera," he replied.
"Yeah. People talk about me like that, too," he said.
We were so deep in our conversation, that we didn't notice a boy our age was standing next to our seat.
"Um, can I sit with you? There's no one else to sit with," he asked.
"Sure," Harry said.
"Go ahead," I said.
"Hey, are you from America?" the boy asked me.
"Yes," I replied.
"Are you Chrislynn Godrick then?" he asked.
"Yes, but please, just call me Chris for short," I replied.
"Sure, Chris. I like that name," Harry said, smiling at me.
I lifted up my bangs for the boy to see my scar. Harry did the same.
"Whoa, you're Harry Potter!" the boy exclaimed.
"Yeah," he said.
"Please try not to drool, we're new to the celebrity thing," I said.
We all laughed. I had already made two friends.
"Oh, by the way, my name is Ronald Weasley. Ron for short." the boy said.
"Excuse me, but I couldn't seem to find another seat. May I sit here?" a girl asked.
"Sure, why not?" I said. The others agreed.
"You're not from here are you? Are you Chrislynn Godrick?" she asked.
I lifted up my bangs to give her my answer. Then, Harry did the same.
"You are Chrislynn," she exclaimed and turned to Harry. "And you're Harry Potter!"
"Don't obsess over them. They don't like it," Ron said.
Harry, Ron, and I laughed. The girl didn't get it.
"I'm Hermione Granger," she said.
"Pleased to meet you, Hermione!" I said.
"Hello!" the boys said.
I made another friend on my first day at Hogwarts.
My three best friends, Harry, Ron, and Hermione, brightened up my day. Harry told us all his story, and I told them all my story. I told them about Uncle George, my parents, and all the spells I can do. They were amazed. I was amazed at Harry's story, too.
We had arrived at Hogwarts and we couldn't believe how big it was. Everyone stared at me and Harry. One person in particular. The whole day he was staring at me. He stared at me in the Great Hall, where we were put into our houses (I'm in Gryffindor with Harry, Ron, and Hermione!), and when every student was looking for their classes.
Anyway, at the end of the day I decided to look for this person who was constantly staring at me. I learned that he is in the Ravenclaw House. It wasn't too hard to find him. He was at the Ravenclaw table in the Great Hall after dinner, talking with a group of people. I made a quick decision to confront him.
"What's your problem?" I had asked him when I came up to him.
"What are you talking about?" he asked. I could see that he was getting nervous.
"You. I could see you staring at me all day!" I exclaimed.
"Well, er, that's only be-because… you're the Girl Who Lived!" he said.
"That is no excuse to stare at me! Didn't your parents ever tell you that it's not polite to stare?" I had said.
"Someone's in a bad mood," he had exclaimed.
"Forgive me for being mad that someone has been staring at me all day!"
"Okay, look. I'm sorry for staring. Happy?"
"Who are you?" I had asked, a little more calm.
"My name is Derrick Kerrington," he had said with pride.
"Okay, Derrick, is there something in my teeth? Do I have a sign that says, 'Kick Me' on my back? I know I'm famous and all but no one has stared at me as much as you! Are you some agent of Voldemort?" I had asked.
"You… you said his name! He-who-must-not-be-named!" he exclaimed.
"Yeah, I said it! So, why were you staring? Hmm?" I had asked.
"Did it ever occur to you that I liked you?" he asked.
"Um," I didn't know what to say!
"Yes. I like you. A lot." he said.
"Oh," I said.
"I do. Like you, I mean. I want to get to know you." he said.
And that is how our relationship began. I really like Derrick. We've been together for three years. I know that is a long time. Let's hope it doesn't end too soon.
Okay, so now you know everything. Pretty much everything, so far. About my life. My life is… complicated. And dangerous. And also adventurous. Well, that's me! Brave, adventurous, beautiful, complicated, confident, powerful Chris.
People tell me that I'm so brave and daring. I mean, I can see how they think that. In my first year at Hogwarts, Voldemort actually came. But, it wasn't him. He was part of one of the professors. Like he possessed the guy. Almost. It's hard to explain. I didn't actually see it. Lucky me. Harry did. Harry said that the professor had two faces, one was his and the other was Voldemort's. Scary, huh?
In my second year here, I took part in the action. Harry, Ron, and I did. Hermione was petrified. Anyway, Harry, Ron, and the current Defense Against the Dark Arts teacher, Gilderoy Lockhart, went down into the Chamber of Secrets. Ron's little sister, Ginny, was taken hostage in the Chamber. There was also a creature down there called a basilisk that was petrifying people in Hogwarts, including Hermione. That needed to be stopped. I wanted to go, too. Harry wouldn't let me. I thought he was just being sexist. So, I followed them to the Chamber. That is how I got caught up in the action. Tom Riddle, a.k.a. Voldemort, was down there. He was controlling the basilisk and keeping Ginny hostage. Ron and Lockhart were split up from Harry. But I still followed Harry. I had made myself invisible (yes, I can do that without Harry's Invisibility Cloak!). Once they were split up and Harry was in the Chamber, I made myself visible again. He was angry. He said I shouldn't be there. I told him he was sexist. Anyway, we found Ginny. She was unconscious. We figured out that Tom Riddle was behind everything. Long story short, the basilisk chased us, Harry defeated it and Tom Riddle, Ginny woke, and we got out safe. Sure, we got wounded. But, it was nothing that Professor Dumbledore's phoenix, Fawkes, couldn't handle. His tears healed our wounds. But defeating Tom Riddle only guaranteed Ginny's safety. Tom Riddle was only a… projection, a ghost kind of. Voldemort is still alive.
In my third year here, we found out about Sirius, Harry's godfather. He's very nice. He said that he had been wanting to meet me! Me! He had been wanting to meet me! I can tell he likes me. I like him, too. He's one of the good guys. And an Animagus; he can turn into a dog at will! At first, Harry thought that Sirius was the one who betrayed his parents and told Voldemort about them. But, he was wrong. Ron's rat, Scabbers, did. I mean, Ron's rat is really a person named Peter Pettigrew. And he works for Voldemort. I worried a little that Voldemort had, like, a secret agent to spy on me. I got over that. There's more important things. The main thing is, Sirius can be trusted and he's been a great help. Harry keeps in touch with him by letter. I've even visited Sirius with Harry before. Our Defense Against the Dark Arts teacher that year was my favorite teacher so far! His name was Professor Lupin and he was a werewolf. Cool, right? I thought so at first, too. But then, Harry and I came face to face with him as a werewolf. He didn't remember us, so he came pretty close to killing us.
And now, back to the present, my fourth year here. We've almost arrived at Hogwarts. I don't know who our new Defense Against the Dark Arts teacher will be. Our first one was possessed, our second went insane, and our third one was a werewolf. I think I like him the best. He taught Harry how to conjure a Patronus to protect him and others from Dementors. They could be pretty nasty.
I can see Hogwarts now! I'm very excited to start another year.
"We're here!" someone said.
Shouts like that could be heard everywhere on the train.
"They're right," I said, as I looked out the window, "Hogwarts is right there."
Harry, Hermione, Ron and I crowded around the window. There it was. Mist rested above the water surrounding the school. It looked very mysterious and scary. Just like a horror movie.
"It's just as I remembered it. Scary and mysterious as usual," Ron said.
"I'm so excited to start another year!" Hermione exclaimed.
"I couldn't agree more," I said.
"You two are excited? How can you be excited when you just know something bad is going to happen?" Harry asked.
"Harry, don't worry," I said to him, "As long as we have each other we'll be fine."
"Of course. We always get through whatever happens, right?" Ron asked his best friend.
"Yeah. I guess." Harry said.
The train came to a stop. Everyone got off and we were escorted to the boats that would bring us across the water.
"Hagrid!" Harry shouted.
I turned around and there he was. Big, lovable Hagrid. He's always been a friend to us and such a big help. We all love him and he loves us.
"Hagrid!" Hermione, Ron, and I shouted in unison.
"Oh how I've missed you all so much!" he exclaimed.
"We've missed you, too, Hagrid." I said.
He gathered us in a big bear hug. I couldn't help but take a big whiff of Hagrid's shirt. It smells just like how I remembered. Disgusting, but it's Hagrid. We love him anyway.
"Come with me, I have a boat for you guys. We can catch up on the way!" he motioned for us to follow him to a boat. We climbed in, Hagrid last. He took us to Hogwarts. My home away from home.
All five of us talked the whole way to Hogwarts. Apparently, a lot had happened over the summer. We told Hagrid about our trip to the Quidditch World Cup. There, we slept in a tent that looked much bigger inside than outside, saw our favorite team and our favorite player, Viktor Krum, and oh, the place got attacked by death eaters.
What are death eaters? People that work for Voldemort. Well, they don't work for him, really, they don't get paid. They burned down all the tents. Everyone was terrified. I had tried to focus on getting everyone out of there, but we lost Harry. We found him the next morning. We looked everywhere. He had been knocked out, so he couldn't hear us calling him. Anyway, we told Hagrid everything and he listened. He told us about all the great animals he "adopted" over the summer, and we listened. Just like old times.
In the Great Hall, everyone separated into their houses. Harry, Ron, Hermione and I went to the Gryffindor table. People were still filing in, old students and new, to their tables. The first-years went to a few tables in the front of the room which is where they will sit until they're put into houses. I saw one professor I've never seen before. He was obviously the new Defense Against the Dark Arts teacher. My friends noticed him, too. Mr. Weasley told us about him.
His name is Mad-Eye Moody. One of his eyes isn't attached to his head. It rolls around in a mechanical contraption that keeps it where his eye should be. A chill ran down my spine when his eyes met mine. He looked away and took a big swig of his drink. It didn't look like the same bottle the other professors' drinks were in.
"What do you suppose he's drinking?" one of our Gryffindor friends asked.
"I dunno. But I don't think it's Pumpkin Juice," Harry replied.
"I have a funny feeling about him. He gives me the chills," I said.
"Same here," Harry said, sharing a suspicious look with me.
My attention broke when I spotted Cedric Diggory. He and his father joined us at the Quidditch World Cup. They showed us how to use a portkey. A portkey takes you from one place to another without a vehicle. Seriously, just touch it and it will take you through a long, vertical tunnel to your desired destination. When we used it, Harry, Ron, Hermione, Ginny and I literally fell through the tunnel. We crashed onto the ground. Somehow Mr. Weasley, Mr. Diggory, and Cedric managed to land gracefully on the ground.
I sat up from my position on the ground and stared in amazement at the three of them. Cedric walked up to me and held his hand out for me to take it. Still amazed, I took it and he helped me off the ground. I saw his beautiful blue eyes for the first time. He was taller than me (I'm 5 feet 4 inches and he is at least 6 feet), so I had to look up to meet his eyes.
"Didn't have a very soft landing, did you?" he asked in his adorable accent. I love British accents so I'm quite happy here in England.
"No, not really." I replied, rubbing my back.
"Are you hurt?" he had asked.
"My back hurts, but it's nothing serious," I had replied.
"Good. You really are selfless like everyone says," he had said.
"People say that about me?" I asked.
"Yes, they say a lot about you. Like how pretty you are," he said.
"And is what they say… true?" I had asked.
He laughed and said, "Everyone creates rumors, but that was not just a rumor for sure."
He flirted with me like that the whole trip. I didn't think about Derrick once. Cedric was very good-looking and sweet. My friends noticed the flirting, too.
"He's gorgeous, but it looks like he only has eyes for you." Hermione said to me.
"Hermione you're making her blush!" Ginny had exclaimed.
I could feel the blood rising to my face. They were right. Cedric barely looked at the rest of them. Harry and Ron had come to join the conversation then.
"Don't you think Derrick would be upset if he found out about it?" Harry had asked me.
"Most likely, but he would be mad at Cedric, not me." I replied.
"Is someone getting jealous?" Ron joked.
"Shut up!" Harry said to him and they both walked away, arguing to each other.
Anyway, back to the present. I realized I had drifted off into my own little world while everyone was entering the Great Hall. I was still staring at the back of Cedric's head when I came back to reality. At that moment, Cedric turned around, saw me, and waved. Still in a daze, I managed to waggle my fingers in a friendly greeting. He smiled. Oh, I love that smile!
"Settle down, settle down!" Professor Dumbledore boomed. He had his wand pressed to his neck to amplify his voice. My attention was drawn away from Cedric as I turned towards Dumbledore.
He began a long speech we hear every year, but we still listened politely. He told us about the new year, about how glad he is to be back, and talked briefly to the first-years about how Hogwarts works. He introduced them to their professors. Then, he turned to Mad-Eye Moody.
"And this," he began, gesturing towards Moody, "is your new Defense Against the Dark Arts teacher, Professor Moody." He paused while we applauded and began talking again, "Your last Defense Against the Dark Arts teacher was unable to teach again for… personal reasons."
Harry, Ron, Hermione and I exchanged glances at that last part. We all knew why he couldn't teach again. He's a werewolf.
"I have one more thing I'd like to talk about." Dumbledore announced. "This year we are hosting something called the Triwizard Tournament."
Excited whispers and confused glances were exchanged all around the room after he said this.
"But," Dumbledore continued, "only students above the age of 17 can enter."
Groans and disappointed sighs were heard after Dumbledore announced this.
"That's not fair!" Fred and George Weasley, Ron's twin brothers, exclaimed simultaneously.
"Calm down!" Dumbledore boomed, his wand pressed to his throat again.
"Now," he began, "this is a three-part tournament in which one student from Hogwarts and one student from the each of the other two schools participates. The other schools are: the all-girls school, Beauxbatons, and the all-boys school, Durmstrang."
Some people let out "oohs" and "aahs" at this.
"Now I am going to show you what will choose the three people who will participate in this tournament." Dumbledore said as he pulled a cloth off of something behind him. It looked like a box. That's what will choose them? I thought. But then, Dumbledore tapped the box-like thing with his wand and it rose up, expanding into something different. It looked like a giant goblet.
"This," Dumbledore started, gesturing towards the goblet thing, "is the Goblet of Fire."
After he said fire, a flame of blue fire rose from the goblet.
"Students who wish to enter the tournament can write their name on a piece of parchment and place it in the fire like so," he demonstrated by putting a piece of paper into the flame and it burned instantly. "The goblet will choose who will get to be in the tournament. I have put a spell on it so that no one who is not above the age of 17 can put their name in the fire."
"Silent!" Dumbledore boomed, again pressing his wand to his throat. He went on explaining the rules of the tournament. He finished by saying, "Let me warn you, this is not a game. This is highly dangerous and could lead to death if you are not careful."
"If it's so dangerous, then I'm glad that no one over 17 can enter. I wouldn't want you two or Derrick to get hurt. Or worse." I said to Harry and Ron. I know Hermione wouldn't do it, so I don't have to be worried about her.
"I feel the same." Hermione said.
"Aw this sucks." Ron exclaimed.
"I have to agree with the girls on this one, mate. People could die. I wouldn't want you to get hurt either." Harry said.
"But I wanted to be a hero! I wanted to fight with all my strength and feel the adrenaline rushing through my veins!" Ron exclaimed.
We all laughed. Except Ron.
"I'm serious! I can be brave just like you, Harry. And Chris." Ron said.
Harry and I went quiet when it sunk in. Ron is jealous. Of us! Maybe it's just hard for him. Maybe it's hard to be best friends with The Boy Who Lived, The Girl Who Lived, and one of the smartest girls in Hogwarts. I felt a pang of guilt.
"Ron -" I started to try to comfort him, but I was interrupted by Hermione.
"Ron, you're biggest fear is of spiders!" she joked. I shot her a look that said, Wrong time to joke, Hermione. She understood and an awkward silence fell upon us.
"I can't help it." Ron murmured.
"It's okay, mate. You're brave. Don't listen to Hermione." Harry said, giving Hermione another look. She looked down at her hands, pretending to be occupied by her nails.
"I didn't know you felt that way, Ron." I said to him. He looked up, met my eyes, and looked away.
"Yeah, well, I do. It's not easy being friends with you three," he said. He got up off of his seat and walked out the door. Just like that. The last thing he said really hit me. He's not just jealous. He's probably under constant pressure around us.
"Oh God, I feel terrible." I said.
"Me too. I think it's our fault, Chris." Harry said to me.
Hermione remained quiet.
"Maybe we should go find him and talk to him," I suggested.
"No, you stay here. The food will be coming out soon. I'll go talk to him," he replied. He got up and went through the same door Ron did.
Harry was right, the food did come out right after he left.
"How can I eat when I feel so guilty?" I said out loud.
Hermione looked up at me.
"I feel really guilty, too," she said, "I can't believe I said that to him."
"Well, let's be positive. I'm sure Harry will get Ron to come back. Stay on the positive side. You know, glass half full and all that." I said, trying to comfort her. And myself. Even though I don't really believe that right now.
Hermione took a deep breath. "Yes, the positive side. Harry will get Ron to come back." she said.
I didn't reply. I couldn't say anything. I didn't want to.
What seemed like hours later, Harry walked through the big double doors in the Great Hall. He came toward us. I couldn't read the expression on his face even though most of the time, I'm the one that understands Harry the most.
"So?" I asked him as he sat down next to me.
"Ron and I talked." Harry replied.
"And…?" Hermione asked.
"Where is Ron?" I asked.
"Ron went to bed early. He just wanted to rest and think in peace." he said.
"What did you say to him?" I asked.
"I told him that he shouldn't feel that way. I told him that we feel terrible and he also shouldn't have kept this to himself for so long." he replied.
I breathed a sigh of relief. That is what I wanted Harry to say and what I expected him to, but I'm still worried. I can't predict the future or read minds. It's too bad that I can't do those things along with the magic I have as a witch.
"I still feel terrible!" I exclaimed.
"So do I, Chris, but there really isn't anything else I can do at this point. Same to you," Harry said to me.
"But maybe I can go and-" I started to say that I should go and talk to Ron, but Harry cut me off.
"Chris, I already told you, there is nothing you can do!" Harry exclaimed.
His words didn't surprise me, but what did was the way that he said it. He never talks to me like that. He was almost yelling.
"Harry, calm down, people are staring!" Hermione said.
I sighed and said, "Goodnight." And I left. Just like that. I barely touched my food, but yet, I'm not hungry. No one said anything to me. I forced myself not to look back at them, my best friends.
I made my way up the moving stairs to the Gryffindor Common Room on the 7th floor. I was the only one who was not in the Great Hall, besides Ron, so my footsteps echoed all the way up to the ceiling. It's almost like watching a sad, gloomy movie. Only I'm not watching it. I'm the leading lady.
The echo of my footsteps was almost eerie. And empty. It's like a metaphor for how I was feeling at that exact moment. Empty. Miserable. Gloomy.
I reached the portrait of the Fat Lady leading to the Gryffindor Common Room and told her the password.
"Shouldn't you be in the Great Hall with everyone else?" she asked.
"Yes, I should, but I'm really tired. I just need some sleep," I said to her.
"That's what the boy who just came in a few moments ago told me," she said. She swung open, revealing the common room. I stepped inside and the Fat Lady kept on talking, "You children should really listen to what your elders say to you. We give you food and friends in a big room with laughing and talking and all you want to do is sleep. Selfish little…" Her voice drifted off as I ignored her. She swung closed and her voice was muffled.
"Oh, shut up, Fat Lady!" another portrait yelled. Any other time I would've smiled. Not tonight.
The fireplace was on, so I sat in a big, soft armchair by it and kicked off my shoes. I stretched my arms out towards the fireplace and placed my hands over the fire. I swung my legs up so they were resting by my side. A blanket was draped over the sofa near me, so I took it and placed it over myself. Then, I grabbed a random book that was sitting on the table in front of me.
Forever Dawn, is the title on the front. It was the first book I saw, so it was good enough for me. I read the inside cover where it provided a brief summary that didn't reveal much. Just by reading that, I learned that the book was a romantic fiction story. It was about two people who fall in love, but there's one problem: one is a vampire and the other is a human. Hogwarts usually doesn't provide books like this, so it probably belongs to a Gryffindor who left it there. I flipped to the prologue to begin reading.
I've never given much thought to how I would die. But dying in the place of someone I love seems like a good way to go.
Those were the first sentences of the prologue. You and me both, I thought. I don't think about dying. But dying for someone I love does sound good if I had a choice.
I don't know when I woke up from my spot in front of the fireplace after falling asleep there, but this morning I woke up in the girls' dormitory in my bed. Most of the girls were already out of their beds except for a couple of girls who always sleep in and miss their first classes. I'd like to sleep in, I mean, who wouldn't? But I don't want to miss any classes and ruin my reputation with the professors.
I stretched my arms and legs as far as I could and wiped the crud out of my eyes. Hermione and I share a bunk bed. She's on the top. I sat up and turned to the right. Hermione poked her head down at me and almost hit her head on mine.
"Aah! Watch it, Hermione!" I exclaimed.
"Sorry! I'm sorry! I just wanted to see how you were doing after leaving us last night." she said.
"Oh. Thanks, Hermione. I'm fine, I guess. I'll be better when I see Ron again." I told her.
"Yeah. Me too," she said and fell silent.
"Well, we should get ready for breakfast."
"Yeah you're right."
She lifted her head back up to her bunk and climbed down the ladder. I waited for her to climb all the way down the ladder, which takes about, oh say, five minutes.
"Hermione, do you always have to follow the rules? You can just jump down! Or at least climb down the ladder faster than that!" I said to her.
"I want to get down from the top bunk as safely as I can." she replied.
"Do you want me to take the top bunk from now on?" I suggested.
"No, no. I'll be fine," she said as her feet finally touched the floor.
I sighed and walked over to my bureau and mirror to get ready for the day. I opened a draw and picked out the usual uniform: a gray v-neck sweater, a button-down white shirt, a gray skirt, and a red and gold striped tie. I looked at the mirror above the bureau. I charmed it so that it can take pictures of me when I'm looking really good that day, so that I can choose from the pictures what I want to look like another day. Cool, huh? All my mirrors at home do that, too. Like right now, I have a really bad case of bed-head, so I don't want to try to tame that mess myself. Why not let magic do that for me? I am the most powerful witch ever, aren't I? My magic mirror is touch-screen to make it even more convenient. I touched the bottom of the screen to go through a bunch of different pictures of different looks.
Anyway, I chose a picture of me with little makeup (I never put a lot) and my hair in a friendly ponytail. But, wait! I just remembered that I'm going to see Derrick today for the first time in, like, a month! So, instead, I chose a picture of me with little makeup on and my hair down in banana curls. Classy and casual! I touched the picture and it became larger, filling the whole screen. That's the one, I thought. I pointed to myself and felt my hair change into the pretty curls I wanted it to. The image of me disappeared from the mirror and my reflection replaced it. I fluffed my hair a little, then pointed to my clothes. Time to change, I thought. I then pointed to myself and my pajamas disappeared and was replaced by my uniform. Then, I put on my Mary Jane shoes (part of the uniform).
I walked over to Hermione's bureau to meet her. She was still doing her hair.
"You should charm your mirror like mine, it's a lot faster." I suggested.
"No, that's ok. I like doing things the Muggle way," she said. I keep forgetting that Hermione's parents are Muggles. She is what some people call a Mudblood. Draco Malfoy, the jerk who we hate, calls her a Mudblood all the time. Last year, Hermione punched him in the face. That had made my day. I haven't done that myself yet, but I would very much like to. He's had a creepy crush on me since my first year here. Like I'd ever be interested in that jerk.
"Morning!" I said cheerfully to Harry when Hermione and I met him in the common room.
"Good morning," he replied to both of us.
"Where is Ron?" Hermione asked.
"I think he went to breakfast early because he wasn't in his bed when I woke up," he replied.
"Oh. I'm going to go look for him. I'll see you guys at breakfast," Hermione said as she left. Harry and I watched her leave, and then he turned to me.
"Can I talk to you for a minute?" he asked.
We walked over to a couch in front of the fireplace. Two boys were sitting there, talking about Quidditch, but when they saw me they got up to make room for me. We sat down in their place.
"What is it? Did you have a dream?" I asked. Harry always tells me about the dreams he has. They're always about Voldemort.
"Is it about Sirius?" I asked. Ever since last year, I've been worried about Sirius. He escaped from Azkaban last year and has been in hiding since.
"No, he's fine."
"Then what did you want to talk about?" I asked, relaxing.
"I'm sorry," he said.
"Sorry? About what?" I asked.
"The way I spoke to you last night at dinner," he replied. At first, I didn't remember. Then I realized. He almost yelled at me. Chris, I already told you, there is nothing you can do! he had said.
"Oh. Yeah, I remember now," my usual cheeriness disappeared.
"And I'm sorry. It's just… the whole thing with Ron… it was stressful… and I… I felt guilty… and it was just -" he said.
I smiled. He's trying to apologize.
"Why are you smiling? It's nothing to be happy about…" he said.
He couldn't say anymore because I gave him a big Chris hug. I should trade mark my hugs.
"Oh, I'm sorry! Did I hurt you?" I asked.
"No not at all. You just took me by surprise. So you forgive me?"
Of course I do! I'm a big softie! "Yes, you're forgiven."
I smiled. He smiled back. This is why I get along with Harry so well.
Before breakfast, I stopped by the courtyard to meet Derrick. I waited at the usual bench that I meet Derrick at. I think I sat there for a full 30 minutes. Everyone left to go to breakfast by the time I gave up waiting. He probably forgot. I'll see him later, I thought.
So, I headed to the Great Hall. I pushed open the big double doors and headed to the Gryffindor table. I spotted Hermione waving at me. She patted the empty spot next to her, indicating that she wants me to sit there. So I did.
"So, what happened when you met Derrick?" she asked.
"Oh… nothing." I said.
"Oh, you can tell me!" she said.
"Nothing happened, Hermione! He wasn't there!" I said.
"Oh… I'm sorry, Chris." she said.
"It's ok. I'll see him later."
Then someone cleared his throat.
It was Ron.
"Chris, I'm really sorry," he said. I looked up at him. His expression was sincere.
"You shouldn't be," I said.
"No, I am. Harry told me how worried you were," he said.
I looked at Harry. He gave me a Hey-I'm-sorry-but-what-can-you-do-it's-already-bee n-done look. I shot him back an I'll-talk-to-you-about-this-later look.
"Um, I'm not worried," I said. I can't lie to my friends very well. They see right through me. Especially Harry.
"Yes, you are. You're worried about me. And I'm sorry for leaving like that and making you worried. I'm fine. I was just… not feeling my best yesterday," Ron said.
"Are you sure you're okay?" I asked.
"See you are worried!" Ron said.
"Well… yeah, but you know me, Ron." I said.
"True, I do know you. Always thinking of people other than yourself," he said.
"Am I really that bad?" I asked.
"Not bad. It's a good personality trait, actually," Hermione said.
"Please, Hermione, I'm on a low learning level," Ron joked.
We all laughed. It felt good to laugh with my friends. Everything was back to normal. Me, my usual, selfless self. Harry, a little quiet, yet loud in his actions and choice of words. Hermione, her usual intelligence showing. And Ron, back to himself, always joking. I like it this way.
In the Goblet Room, in which the Goblet of Fire was placed, Hermione and I were working on something for a class while Ron and Harry admired the Goblet. There were many students in the big room with us, doing the same as Harry and Ron.
A week before, Dumbledore told us about the Triwizard Tournament. The other schools had already arrived and made themselves comfortable.
Just then, some of the boys from Durmstrang, lead by Viktor Krum, entered the room. Leading the way, Krum and his friends walked straight towards the Goblet. Dumbledore drew an age line around the Goblet that stopped anyone under the age of 17 from putting their name in the Goblet. Krum passed right through the age line and placed a piece of paper with his name on it into the flame. He and his friends cheered. The group of Durmstrang boys fell apart, and Krum went to greet his fans. I looked over at Hermione who, to my surprise, was staring at Krum!
"Hermione," I said, trying to get her attention. She didn't hear me.
"Hermione!" I tried again, this time louder.
"Hmm? Oh, sorry, Chris! What were you saying?" she said.
"Forget the school work, why were you just drooling at Krum?" I asked her.
She blushed. "I wasn't… drooling."
"But you were staring!" I said.
"What? No, I was not… okay maybe I was. A little," she admitted.
"Shhhh!" Hermione put her finger to her lips, indicating that she wants me to quiet down.
I covered my mouth with my hand to try to suppress the giggles. I calmed down and said, "Hermione, I distinctly remember you telling the guys over the summer that their obsession of Viktor Krum was ridiculous."
"In my defense, that was different. They were obsessed. I am not obsessed. I just… like him a little…" she drifted off and looked back at Krum.
I smiled. Hermione looked back at me after Krum and his friends left.
"What are you smiling at?" she asked.
"Oh, nothing." I said. What I didn't say was that I was happy for her.
Just then, Fred and George, Ron's twin brothers, came in.
"I think we've finally got it!" Fred said.
"We're geniuses, Fred!" George exclaimed.
They were both holding a drink. They each took a big swig of it. Then, they held up pieces of paper with their names on it. I realized that they were going to try to cross the age line and enter the Triwizard Tournament.
"It's not going to work." Hermione mumbled.
"What was that, Granger?" George asked.
"It's not going to work," she said louder.
"And why not?" Fred asked.
"Because that," she pointed to the age line, "is an age line. Professor Dumbledore drew it himself."
"So?" Fred and George said in unison.
"So… Professor Dumbledore is a smart man and wizard. The result of your stupid hobby will not work." Hermione replied matter-of-factly.
"Oh, so now what we do is stupid?"
"Well, yeah. That potion you made is not going to work."
"We say it will."
"Oh I'm sorry, but I don't remember you two becoming smart enough."
"Watch and learn, Granger." Fred and George said in unison.
They took one step towards the Goblet of Fire and jumped over the age line. They looked over at Hermione and I and winked.
Hermione sighed, frustratingly. I giggled.
"You can do it, guys!" I called out. Ron and Harry cheered. The whole room joined in.
They gently placed the pieces of paper into the flame, cautiously, like their lives depended on it. Maybe it did. We don't know what Dumbledore did. Everyone watched as the paper burned in the flame. Fred and George looked at each other. Everyone held their breath. They both stepped over the age line again. Success.
Applause broke out everywhere. Fred and George turned to Hermione and Fred said, "I don't want to be a bad friend and say this, but…"
George joined in to help him finish his sentence, "… we told you so!"
They started laughing. Everyone watching from the sidelines joined the twins in the middle to congratulate them.
"Just watch," Hermione muttered so low that only I could hear her. I did. It's a good thing I listened to her, because I could've missed what happened next if I blinked.
Fred and George didn't look like teenagers anymore; they looked like two old men! Everyone laughed, even Hermione. Except Fred and George.
They looked at each other and gasped. Then they looked down at themselves and screamed.
"You said!" Fred yelled.
"You said!" George yelled.
The both lunged at each other and landed on the floor, rolling around like two pigs in mud. I laughed even more at my little animal joke.
I need to get this moment on camera, I thought.
I raised my left hand, palm up, and pointed to it with my right. A digital camera appeared in my left palm.
"Hermione," I said, turning to her, "take a picture with me. We need proof that we were here!"
We put our heads together and smiled with the chaotic scene behind us. I stretched my arm out in front of us. Click. I looked at the screen to make sure that the picture was taken. It was. And to the right of our smiling faces was Fred and George, on the floor punching each other.
Click. I took another picture. This time Harry and Ron are in it. Harry looked up at the camera and smiled, pointing to the fight. Ron had no idea about the picture, but he had the perfect pose. His arms were outstretched above him, his mouth open, like a person at a football game who's favorite team had just got a touchdown. Fred just punched George in the stomach!
Click. I took one last picture of them, one on top of the other, white hair all in their faces.
"Why don't you just take a video?" Hermione asked.
"That's a good idea!" I said. I can't believe I didn't think of that!
I switched the camera to video mode. Click. The video started. I pointed the camera to the Weasley twins and zoomed in. They were still rolling around on the floor. I zoomed out and pointed the camera to Hermione, who had a huge smile on her face.
"This is hilarious!" she laughed.
I pointed the camera to Harry and Ron. They were both in football fan mode. Or around here, Quidditch fan mode! I pointed the camera back to the twins, who were now standing up. They started yelling at each other again. Everybody else got tired of watching them, so they all went back to talking with their friends. I stopped the video.
"Guys," I called out to Fred and George, "I'm sure it will wear off soon."
"Why can't you help us?" Fred asked.
"Where would the fun in that be?" I replied.
"Funny," George said sarcastically.
Harry and Ron came over to Hermione and I.
"She's right. It's much more funny this way," Ron said.
"Oh come on, Chris. We're your friends! Can't you help your friends out?" Fred said.
I sighed. "Okay fine. Suck the fun out of it."
I walked over to them. They can't look like this forever, I thought.
I pointed to Fred, who returned to normal, and then to George, who did also.
"Thanks," they said simultaneously.
"We owe you." George said.
"Yeah, I'd like to see you do something for someone you owe," I said.
They started to protest, but were interrupted by the doors opening.
And in walked Cedric Diggory.
Everybody paused to see who it was. Some of the guys turned around and saw him, recognized him, and then turned back around, obviously jealous. All the girls continued to stare. He had about, oh, ten or fifteen of his closest friends following him. They walked towards the goblet. Cedric put his name in the goblet. Everybody cheered.
Cedric returned all the high fives and fist pounds from his friends. He looked over to where Hermione, Harry, Ron, and I stood… and flashed the most perfect smile I've ever seen! Hermione and I practically swooned while Harry and Ron scowled.
"He's walking over to us!" Hermione exclaimed in a excited whisper.
She was right.
"Hello, ladies," he said after he reached us, "Hi Harry, Ron."
"Cedric." Harry and Ron said, nodding once, and walking away.
Hermione rolled her eyes at them. I scowled.
"I missed you guys. I haven't seen any of you in a week," Cedric said.
My scowl faded away into a smile and Hermione turned her attention back towards Cedric.
"So, you're entering the Triwizard Tournament?" I asked.
"Yeah. I decided 'hey, why not?'. It looks like fun and I'm a pretty competitive person," he replied.
"Cedric, it's not all fun and games." Hermione said to him.
"Yeah, she's right, didn't you hear Dumbledore? It's highly dangerous," I said, agreeing with Hermione.
"I'm sure I can handle it, but thanks for your concern," he said.
"Just a warning, okay?" I said.
"We don't want you to get hurt." Hermione said.
"Thanks," he said again, with another blinding smile, "you two are really great friends."
He hugged Hermione and then turned to hug me, but something behind me stopped him.
"Er… I have to go. Talk to you later, Chris?" he asked.
"Yeah…" I said, confused. Why didn't he hug me, too?
"Bye, Cedric." Hermione said in a daze.
"Hermione," I started to ask her why he didn't hug me, but in the next second I got my answer.
"Chris," someone behind me said. The voice wasn't cheery, it was serious. I recognized the voice, but to make sure, I spun around to meet the voice's owner.
"Derrick! I haven't seen you all day!" I said with enthusiasm in my voice.
"I've been busy," he replied.
"That's what you said the day after we were supposed to meet," I said, the cheeriness gone. I put emphasis on the 'after'.
"I… have to go," Hermione said, bolting the same way Cedric did.
"I told you, I've-"
"Been busy, I know. You said that."
"I'm sorry, but there's been a lot of things going on at home."
"So? You can't see your girlfriend when she wants to see you?"
"I do, but I've been writing to my parents every day."
"How long does that take? Ten minutes of your day?"
"It's been stressful at home."
"Stress? That's your excuse."
"My parents are getting divorced."
Something softened inside me at that.
"Oh… I'm so sorry. I didn't know," I said, concerned.
"It's okay. I just wanted you to know," Derrick told me.
"I wouldn't have yelled at you like that if I'd known… I'm sorry… I haven't seen you in so long," I said.
"I know. I've missed you." he said.
Then, he grabbed my waist, pulling me closer. His lips pressed against mine.
I pulled away.
"Derrick, not now," I said to him.
Most of the attention in the room was on us.
"It's okay, everyone knows we're together. There's no use in hiding it," he said.
"I have to go now. We're playing poker in the Ravenclaw Common Room tonight," he said.
"Okay, see you tomorrow?" I asked.
"Yeah, sweet dreams, Chris," he said.
He kissed me one more time on the lips before he left.
Why does he want to play poker more than he wants to see me? Doesn't he miss me? I miss him. I haven't seen the Derrick I fell in love with since summer.
"And now, the moment you've all been waiting for. The champions selection!" Dumbledore announced. He walked over to the Goblet of Fire.
The flame turned red and spit out a piece of paper. Dumbledore caught the paper while the flame turned back to its usual blue.
"The Durmstrang champion is… Viktor Krum!"
The whole Durmstrang crowd cheers.
I looked at Hermione. Her face was practically glowing.
The flame turned red again and spit out another paper.
"The Beauxbatons champion is… Fleur Delacour!"
The girls from Beauxbatons cheered.
"And lastly," Dumbledore started as another name came out, "the Hogwarts champion is… Cedric Diggory!"
Hermione and I stood up and applauded along with all the other girls from Hogwarts. The boys stayed seated and applauded. I looked down at Ron and Harry. Their faces showed no enthusiasm. They are so jealous.
"We now have our three champions! I congratulate all of you, but only one will go down in history and earn the Triwizard Cup!" Dumbledore boomed.
Everyone applauded. That is, everyone except Harry and I.
"Do you see what I'm seeing?" I asked Harry when I noticed that he wasn't clapping either.
"If you mean the flame glowing red again, then yes," he replied.
Harry and I have both been through enough to be alert at all times. Even under the seemingly safe roof of Hogwarts.
We both told Hermione and Ron, who told Neville and Ginny, who told Seamus and Dean, and on and on. Less than a minute had passed, but already the whole room's attention was on the goblet.
All the professors saw us, glanced towards the goblet, and then to Dumbledore, who was just noticing what we were.
"That's strange…" Dumbledore muttered.
The flame sputtered and spit out another little piece of paper. Dumbledore watched it fall slowly, until he caught it and read,
"Harry Potter… Harry Potter!"
My jaw dropped.
Ron was still in shock.
Dumbledore's eyes searched the room for Harry.
"Harry POTTER!" Dumbledore boomed.
"Go, Harry!" Hermione said.
"Hurry!" I said, nudging him.
Harry slowly walked up to Dumbledore, confusion plainly seen on his face. I knew he was just as confused as the rest of us, although some other people didn't believe that he was confused. They thought he cheated. I could see it on others' faces.
"He's a cheat! He's not even seventeen yet!" someone yelled.
I was right.
Aren't I always?
It's late. I know it is. But no matter what, I'm going to find out what happened a couple hours ago. I'll wait here all night for Harry to get back. He's been with the headmasters of the other schools, Igor and Madame Maxine, Dumbledore, Professor McGonagall, Barty Crouch, Mad-Eye Moody, and the other champions for the past two hours. What could they be possibly discussing? Harry's punishment? Is he going to be expelled? Is Barty going to turn him in to the Minister of Magic?
I felt a hand rest lightly on my shoulder.
I jumped a foot above the couch I was sitting on in the Gryffindor Common Room.
"Oh, sorry, Chris. Didn't mean to startle you. You're usually more alert," Harry's voice told me.
I turned around to meet Harry's wary expression.
"It's my fault. I was just… thinking," I lied.
"Worrying, you mean? About me?" He corrected.
"Okay, yeah. A little bit," I admitted.
"Have you been waiting for me all night?" he asked as he walked around the couch and plopped down next to me.
"I want to know what happened."
"I'm sure everyone would like to know. I'm not too sure myself."
"What were they saying?" I asked.
"They were arguing, mostly. First, Dumbledore asked if I had put my name in. I said, 'no, sir'. Then, he asked if I had somebody older put it in for me. Again, I said, 'no, sir'. Madame Maxine said I was lying. Moody went on about how powerful the goblet is and that no one, except someone exceptionally powerful, could trick it," he said.
"Then what?" I asked.
"Then Dumbledore asked me something I never would have suspected him to ask."
"What? What did he ask you?" I became impatient.
"He asked me… if I had you do it for me," he said, looking down at the floor. I'm guessing he didn't want to see my reaction.
I looked at the fireplace. It can be so soothing at times like this. "Me?"
"Of course I said no. I would never ask you to do something like that for me," Harry reassured me.
"How could Dumbledore think that I'd use my powers that way?" I asked, incredulous.
"I don't know how anybody would think you would. Apparently, it was the only solution that made sense to him." Harry said.
I nodded. I could have cheated for Harry if I wanted to. I could have cheated for Fred and George. I could have cheated for anyone, but I didn't. I would never.
"So… is that what they were debating?" I asked.
"That and whether or not I should still compete," Harry said.
"Of course you shouldn't!" I exclaimed.
"Chris -" he started, but didn't finish.
"It is far too dangerous for you to compete. Did you hear Dumbledore? He said people can die in that competition."
"It's already been done, Chris. I have to compete. Barty Crouch from the Ministry explained the rules. Rules are rules."
"I don't care about the rules! You can't compete! You'll… you could die! I don't want to lose you, Harry!" Tears began collecting in pools on the rims of my eyes. I blinked to try to keep them from falling. That never works. I gave up, letting the tears fall.
"I'll be fine, Chris. Please, don't cry. I don't want to compete either, but I'll do fine. I won't die. I'll be fine," he kept trying to reassure me.
He put his arm around me and pulled me closer to him so that I could bury my face in his shoulder. He let me sob there until my breathing became slow and even again. My tears soaked his shirt.
"Oh. I'm sorry," I apologized when I saw his shirt.
"It's fine," His voice was firm.
He never likes it when I cry. And that happens whenever someone I love's life is in danger. Which has happened at least two or three other times over the years.
Oh, Harry. He's such a good friend. He always lets me cry when I need to. It doesn't happen too frequently. I've built a hard shell over the years. Only when my friends and family are in danger, my hard shell cracks, but never breaks open completely. Some day the hard shell will finally break, and I will never be myself again. But, until that day comes, I'm going to be the same brave, confident, selfless, and kind Chris that everyone says I am. They say that they know me. But they don't.
Anyway, I was finally calming down while I thought to myself. I didn't even realize that Harry was still there, breathing calmly, beside me.
"You okay now?" he asked.
"Yeah, I guess," I answered.
"Well, I'm going to stay here until you're sure you're alright," he said, not taking his arm off of my shoulders.
"Thanks, Harry," I said, resting my head against his shoulder.
He sighed and closed his eyes.
"Harry?" I asked to see if he was awake.
"Did I wake you?" I asked.
"No, I was just resting my eyes," he said to me, his eyes wide open now.
"Am I… too sensitive?" I asked.
"You? Sensitive? No way!" Harry told me, his eyes on me now, searching my face.
"What's bothering you?" he asked.
"Nothing, I… I'm just worried."
"I told you, you don't have to worry about me." he said.
"I don't mean about you… I do worry about you, but…" I trailed off.
"There's other things I worry about," I said, not lying but not exactly telling the truth. I worry about other things, but there's one thing in particular I'm thinking about right now.
I'm worried that I'm getting too sensitive. I don't want to be too sensitive. I want to keep that hard shell. In my life, I always have to be alert and strong and clever and so on. My life is so dangerous, that I have to have those qualities. And along the way, I've become brave. I don't know how, but dangerous things don't scare me as much as someone else. Ever since my parents died, I've been that way. The only times I'm ever afraid anymore is when someone I love's life is in danger.
"You're worried that you're getting too sensitive? You? Chrislynn Godrick? The Girl Who Lived? You aren't that sensitive. The only times that I have seen you cry is when someone's life is in danger, like a few minutes ago, and when you talk about your parents," Harry reassured me.
He always knows what I want to hear. And what I'm thinking.
"Thanks, Harry. That was what I wanted to hear."
"Why do you think that anyway?" he asked.
"Well… I don't really know. I just thought of that now. I think because I just cried all over your shirt." I said.
"You had a reason to cry. You're worried about me. That's just you, Chris. You're always worried about someone. It's not a bad thing. It shows you care," Harry told me.
I smiled. Maybe he's right. I'm not getting too sensitive.
He continued, "And you're brave more than sensitive. I like both of those qualities in you."
I smiled even bigger. "Thank you, Harry. You're the best friend I've ever had." It's true. I haven't had a conversation like this with anyone else. Not even Derrick.
"Same here, Chris, same here…" he started to say something else, but trailed off.
Harry closed his eyes. I did, too. This is comfortable. Especially the warm fireplace…
"Isn't that sweet," a voice rasped coming from the fireplace.
My eyes opened quickly.
"Did you hear that or was that just me?" I asked Harry, looking up at him. His eyes were as alert and open as mine.
"I heard it, too," he said, his arm moving from his casual spot on my shoulders to a more protective spot in front of me. Then, he got up and stood between the fireplace and where I was sitting.
Sensing no danger, I got up, hands on hips, and stood next to Harry.
"I see something in the fire," he whispered.
I could plainly see Sirius's face formed by the ashes. And he was smiling.
"Sirius, don't scare us like that!" I exclaimed.
"Oh, I thought you never got scared?" he replied teasingly.
"Sirius?" Harry whispered.
"No need to whisper, Harry. I'm sure everyone is asleep. It's past midnight." Sirius rasped.
"Oh," Harry said, his body relaxing.
I plopped back down on the couch and Harry did the same.
"How long were you there?" I asked Sirius.
"Well, I, er, didn't see you cry if that's what you want to know," he replied.
The fire had died down and I didn't even notice until now.
"I didn't say I did."
"Okay, you caught me. I saw you crying. That's when I tried to contact you through the fireplace," Sirius admitted.
"Why didn't you say anything?" Harry asked.
"I didn't want to interrupt your little moment," he replied, chuckling.
"Oh don't look so mad, Chrislynn," Sirius said.
"I told you, call me Chris!"
"And you were worried that you're too sensitive! Ha!" he laughed.
"Yeah, I guess that was kinda silly," I said.
"That's what I said!" Harry exclaimed.
"Anyway, you obviously needed to talk to Harry about something, so I'm going to go to bed," I said, getting up off the couch.
"Chris, wait!" Sirius called.
I stopped in my tracks.
"Goodnight guys," I said without turning around.
"Chris, I think you should stay and hear what I have to say, too. You are as much a part of this as Harry is," Sirius said.
I turned around. "I am?"
What could involve me?
"Sit down, please," Sirius said to me.
So I took my spot next to Harry again. He put his arm around me. That would've bothered me before tonight, but I think I've gotten closer to Harry.
"So what's wrong?" Harry asked Sirius.
"Well, first I want to talk about this tournament business."
"I honestly didn't put my name in that goblet. I have no idea how I ended up being one of the champions."
"I believe you, Harry." Sirius told him.
"So do I, Harry," I looked in his eyes to let him now that what I said was true.
His face showed no expression.
"I don't know about you, but this whole thing is really suspicious to me." Sirius said.
"I agree," I said.
"But I do know that Hogwarts is not safe anymore," Sirius said.
"What do you mean?" Harry asked.
"There are devils inside these walls. Igor Karkaroff, he was a Death Eater. And nobody stops being a Death Eater. Not after what happened with your uncle, Chris. And Barty Crouch, he sent his own son to Azkaban." Sirius explained.
"So do you think that one of them put my name in the goblet?" Harry asked.
"I don't know who did it, Harry, but it obviously wasn't someone you should consider a friend. That's how I know you didn't do it for him, Chris. This tournament is too dangerous. You could die." Sirius said.
I looked at Harry with an I-told-you-so look.
He ignored it and instead said, "I think I'm ready for it."
"No you're not!" I exclaimed.
He scowled at me.
"You don't know what will happen, Harry!" I exclaimed.
"Neither do you," he snapped back.
I kept my mouth shut.
"Harry, she's right, but you have no choice. Be careful," Sirius warned.
"And about your dream," Sirius started.
"You had a dream?" I asked. I can't keep my mouth shut for long.
"Yeah… sorry, I forgot to tell you about it." Harry said.
Sirius cleared his throat. "Anyway, you said Wormtail and Voldemort were in your dream, but who was the third man in the room?"
"You didn't hear a name?"
"No. Voldemort was giving him a job to do. Something… important."
"And what was that?"
"He wanted me. And… Chris."
I stiffened. He wants Harry? Oh no!
"But, it was just a dream, right?" Harry asked Sirius.
"Yes… just a dream." Sirius reassured him.
I don't believe Sirius. Not even a little.
Harry and I both have some kind of… connection with Voldemort. When Voldemort tried to kill us, he left a part of him with us. I took some of his power, just a little though because I already had a lot of power, and Harry took… well, I'm not very sure what Harry took. Their brains are connected, I think. Voldemort can send Harry images and dreams. That has to be it, right? Anyway, Harry's been having dreams like that recently. And of course, there is the scar thing. Whenever Voldemort, his death eaters, or any other danger is near, our scars send us a sharp pain. Like a migraine, only a little worse. Harry's is always stronger than mine, though. I'm not sure why. Maybe to balance it out? I get the power, Harry gets the brain? I don't know.
My life is so screwed up it's unbelievable.
I feel terrible. For what I did.
I eavesdropped. When I wasn't supposed to.
Last night after Sirius said goodnight and his face vanished from the fire, Harry got up from his place on the couch and said, "So, um, you okay now?"
"About you risking your life? No. About me thinking I was too sensitive? Yes."
"Well, as long as you're okay…"
"I'm okay. For now," I said.
"Okay. Goodnight, Chris. See you in the morning," Harry said, walking towards the boy's dormitory. I knew Harry would have to face everyone in the morning. Even Ron and Hermione. They'll be asking questions.
"Sleep well, Harry."
I heard some noise coming from the boy's dormitory.
"Oh, no, that must be Ron." Harry muttered.
I watched as he started to walk up the stairs. He paused halfway up, and whispered, "Maybe I better sleep down here and just leave him alone…"
"Go, Harry," I ordered.
He took one last breath, as if he was diving into deep water, let it out, and disappeared up the steps.
Poor thing, I had thought to myself.
I hope Ron won't be too hard on him. I mean, Ron doesn't know what happened back there. Nobody does. But, I know that Harry didn't put his name in the goblet and Ron doesn't.
I'd like to listen in on this conversation, I thought.
I pointed to my ears. Suddenly, I could hear everything. The crackle of the fire, the snore of a Gryffindor boy, the murmur of portraits complaining to themselves, the chirp of the crickets outside….
And then I could hear Ron.
"How did you do it?" he asked Harry.
Harry remained silent.
"Never mind. Doesn't matter. You could have let your best friend know though."
"Let you know what?" Harry asked.
"You know bloody well what!" Ron exclaimed.
"I didn't ask for this to happen, Ron. Okay? You're being stupid."
"Yeah, that's me. Ron Weasley, Harry Potter's stupid friend."
"I didn't put my name in that cup. I don't WANT eternal glory, I just want to be… Look, I don't know what happened tonight and I don't know why, it just did okay?" Harry said.
"Piss off," Ron said.
I heard the rustle of sheets as Ron climbed into bed. I heard another rustle of sheets a minute later. Harry's going to bed. I heard a click as the light turned off.
I don't need the super hearing anymore, I thought, pointing to my ears.
My hearing was back to normal in seconds. All I heard was the low crackle of the fireplace.
I should put the fire out, I thought, pointing to the fireplace. Nothing happened. Oh, of course! The fireplaces must be charmed.
I made my way up the stairs to bed.
Harry and I are down by the lake with our friend Neville Longbottom, a really big plant lover.
Neville is examining some strange species of plant near the water. Harry is flipping through a book Neville gave him. I'm relaxing with my back against a tree, listening to the calm splash of the water hitting the bank.
"Amazing, amazing." Neville muttered.
"Neville, you're doing it again!" Harry exclaimed.
"Oh, right. Sorry."
"Magical Water Plants of the Highland Lochs?" Harry read from the book.
"Moody gave it to me," Neville says.
Then Neville waved to somebody Harry and I couldn't see.
Hermione and Ron were walking toward us.
"We've already been through enough people. Why don't you just go and do it yourself? Ugh. What do you want me to say again?" Hermione whispered to Ron.
I raised my eyebrows. What's this about?
Ron whispered something back to Hermione and she walked up to Harry.
"Harry - Oh, hi, Chris - Harry, Ronald would like me to tell you that Seamus told him that Dean was told by Parvati that Hagrid was looking for you," she said to Harry.
Whoa. That is confusing.
"Is that right? Well, you just tell him that… wait, what?" Harry asked, confused.
I looked at Neville. He wasn't even paying attention. He was just quietly flipping through his book.
"Umm…" Hermione stalled.
She went back to Ron and whispered more.
She came back and said, "Dean was told by Parvati that… Please don't ask me to say it again. Hagrid is looking for you."
"Oh. Well, you can tell Ronald…" Harry started.
"I am NOT an owl!" Hermione exclaimed.
Hermione walked back to Ron and they walked away together.
"I just wanted to say thank you…" Harry whispered.
I walked up to Harry and gave him a hug. He needs it.
I was walking to the Gryffindor Common Room to go to bed early. I walked by Nearly Headless Nick, the Gryffindor Ghost, going up the stairs.
"Ah, Chris! Just the girl I was looking for." he said.
"Oh, hello, Nick!" I said.
"I just came to tell you that Dumbledore wants to see you in his office."
"As soon as possible! I'd recommend just zapping yourself there! Ha!" He laughed.
"Yes, that is the quickest way. Thank you, Nick. I'll see you soon?" I asked.
"Yes, of course, Chris. I love visiting you! Goodbye!" He waved.
Dumbledore needs me in his office ASAP, I thought. Then I waved to Nick with one hand and pointed to myself with the other.
I arrived in Dumbledore's office seconds later, right in front of his desk. He was sitting there, looking straight ahead, probably waiting for me.
"Ah, Chrislynn," he started. He's the only one who I let call me by my full name. He continued, "I was waiting for you."
Yep, I was right.
I sat down in a chair across from his desk, crossed my legs, and placed my hands in my lap.
"What did you need me for, Professor?" I asked in my sweetest voice.
"You're not in trouble," he told me.
I relaxed more in my armchair.
"Then why am I here?" I asked.
"Well, I brought you here to talk about Harry and his entering the tournament."
"You don't think Harry put his name in the cup do you?" I asked.
"No of course not. I believe Harry," Dumbledore said.
I breathed a sigh of relief.
"Are you the only one who believes Harry?" I asked him.
"No, Mad-Eye Moody and Professor McGonagall seem to believe him, too," he replied.
"Then what's the problem? That's three against two," I stated.
"No, you forgot Barty Crouch."
"And what does he think?"
"He doesn't care about whether or not Harry cheated, but he does care about whether or not he competes. Mr. Crouch says that, according to the rules, Harry has no choice but to compete," Dumbledore told me.
Why does Harry have to compete?
"He's not ready for this, Professor," I told him.
"Oh, I think he's ready. Besides, he has no choice." he said.
I put my head in my hands. Dumbledore reached over and patted my back affectionately.
"There's no need for you to worry, Chrislynn. Harry will be fine," he tried to reassure me.
I looked up at him. I could tell by the expression on his face that my eyes were all red and watery. I just put my head back into my hands.
"This may not be the best time to tell you this, but some of the others thought that maybe you put Harry's name in the cup for him. Now I can see that you didn't." Dumbledore said.
"No, of course I didn't! I would never put Harry's life in danger on purpose!" I yelled as loud as I could, which wasn't much since I was starting to cry. A sob came out from somewhere inside me.
"I can see that. You may go now, Chrislynn."
I nodded and got up as quickly as I could and started to run out of there, but Dumbledore stopped me.
"Chrislynn?" He called. I turned around and he asked, "You'll be okay?"
"I'll get over it. I don't want Harry to see me like this," I said.
Next stop, the girl's bathroom.
There's one bathroom in particular that I go to when I'm feeling down. Moaning Myrtle's Bathroom. No one uses it except Moaning Myrtle. Who is Moaning Myrtle? A long time ago, there was a girl named Myrtle. She had no friends and spent most of her time in the bathroom. I don't know how, but she died in her stall in the bathroom. And so, there her ghost lives. Nobody uses the bathroom anymore because of Myrtle.
Good. It's empty and quiet enough for me. The first time I've been in the bathroom was in my second year. Hermione, Ron, Harry, and I used it as a private place to concoct a potion. This bathroom is also where the entrance to the Chamber of Secrets is located.
Anyway, I rubbed my eyes and looked down, hoping that nobody would notice that I had been crying. I made it all the way to the bathroom without anyone stopping me.
I pushed open the doors and ran to one corner of the big room. My tearless sobs echoed off the walls. Why am I worrying so much about Harry? I've never worried or cried this much before.
"Ohhhhh," a voice wailed.
Myrtle. All she does is moan and groan and complain and wail in that stall of hers. That's why she's called Moaning Myrtle.
"Ohhh, who is moaning more than meeeee?" Myrtle complained. She floated out of her stall and up towards the ceiling, putting her hands over her ears. She looked all around, her eyes searching the big room, until she saw me in the corner.
"Oh, Chris! You're crying!" she yelled.
Luckily, nobody can hear what goes on inside these walls.
Another reason why I come here to sulk, is because I can always talk to Myrtle. She comforts me and listens to me vent. The only time she stops moaning is when I talk to her privately.
"What's wrong? You only come here when it's really bad. What is it?" she asked as she floated down to my corner and sat down by me.
I stopped sobbing and cleared my throat so I could talk.
"Did you hear about the tournament?" I asked her.
"You mean the Triwizard Tournament? Yes, I have. What about it?"
"Well, Harry's name somehow got into the goblet and now he's competing in the tournament!"
"WHAT? Harry?" Myrtle's always been mean to boys, except for Harry. She is always nice to him. And she even tries to flirt with him. Unsuccessfully.
"I know! He's much too young and the tournament is way too dangerous! I don't think he's ready! I'm afraid that he's going to really hurt himself… or die!"
"That's why you're crying?"
"Oh, Chris, you're always worried. I'm sure he'll be fine. Harry knows what he's doing."
"Myrtle, you're just saying that because if Harry dies, then he'll be a ghost and you can have him all to yourself."
She gasped. "NOT true! Okay, maybe it is. But, come on. He'll be fine."
Even though Myrtle was trying to comfort me, I just couldn't keep this image of Harry out of my head. He was lying motionless on the ground. Dead. I brought my knees up, wrapped my arms around them, and put my face on my knees. Myrtle kept rubbing my back, trying to calm me down.
"Hmm…" Myrtle muttered, thinking to herself.
"What?" I asked as I looked up at her. My face was sticky with the dry tracks of my tears.
"I was just thinking about why you're crying so much. I haven't seen you cry over Harry."
I unwrapped my arms from my legs and let them drop. Then, I walked over to the sink and turned on the faucet.
"Myrtle, what am I going to do with myself?" I asked.
I splashed water over my face and rubbed my eyes.
"You don't have a towel." Myrtle said.
I need to dry my face, I thought and pointed to the sink. A towel appeared.
As I was drying my face, Myrtle said, "You know, I think you're starting to get really close to Harry."
I put the towel down to answer her. "What do you mean? Like really close best friends or…" I said, not having to finish the sentence.
Myrtle nodded slowly. I knew what she meant.
"No! Definitely not!"
"I think you are. You're slowly drifting away from Derrick and towards Harry."
"What makes you think that?"
"I haven't heard you talk about Derrick once lately, and look at yourself! Crying over Harry like he's your boyfriend."
"I am not!" I paused, and thought about it before speaking again. "Am I really?"
"I think so."
"Oh boy. I am so messed up."
Myrtle smiled. "Nobody's perfect. Not even you."
"Chris! Chris!" someone called out to me.
It's the morning after my mental/emotional breakdown in the girl's bathroom and I'm sitting in the library, thinking about what Myrtle said and looking like I'm doing homework. It's the weekend, so I can do whatever I want. I should go look for Derrick, but that's probably him calling me right now. I turned around.
Nope. It's Harry.
I put a fake smile on my face so Harry wouldn't notice how sad I was last night.
"What are you doing in the library on a Saturday morning?" he asked.
"Oh, just finishing some homework," I replied.
"Homework? We have homework?"
"Umm, yeah, you know. That assignment the professor gave us…" I lied.
He sat down next to me. We were so close, our shoulders were touching. I was suddenly aware of how comfortable he is around me. And how comfortable I am around him.
"What are you really doing in here, Chris?" he said. He saw right through my lie.
I sighed. What am I supposed to tell him? Oh, hey, Harry. Did you know I had an emotional breakdown last night over you? No! I'd never tell him that.
"Just… thinking." I finally answered.
"About what? The tournament?" he asked.
"Uh… yeah. The tournament," That was close!
"I'll be fine," he said.
I sighed again. "I know."
"So speaking of the tournament, Hagrid showed me what the first task is."
So that's what Ron wanted to tell Harry, but sent Hermione to.
"What is it?"
"Dragons?" I exclaimed.
"Yeah! Isn't that exciting?"
"Exciting? Don't you mean dangerous?" I exclaimed.
Harry rolled his eyes at me. I pretended I didn't see it.
"Aren't you the one who likes danger?"
"Well, yeah, but… dragons? You have to FIGHT dragons?" I asked.
"I dunno. Hagrid only knows that dragons are involved."
"Does Cedric know?" I asked.
"Yeah I told him, Fleur and Krum," he said. Good. At least they know what's coming.
I breathed a sigh of relief. "Okay, that makes me feel a little bit better. At least you know that much."
"Yeah. Did you see those badges that people are wearing?"
"They say 'Potter Stinks' on them."
"And everywhere I go, people insult me and make rude comments like, 'Get out of here, Potter!' or 'Potter stinks. Cedric rules!' "
"Come on," I said to him, getting up.
"Where are we going?" he asked, confused.
"Outside. No one will insult you with me around."
"Yeah… I should've thought of this before!" Harry said.
I smiled. The Potter haters better stay away.
Harry and I marched outside. Harry made sure he was standing right next to me, so people would know that we were walking together. I put the meanest expression on my face, so people would know to stay away, and walked with this confidence that screamed 'Get out of the way! The Girl Who Lived is coming through!'. Harry saw my expression and copied it. We made it out of the library, through the halls, and to the courtyard before anyone said anything to Harry or me.
The first person came as soon as we got outside. The surprising part is, it was Ron. He was walking along with Seamus. He spotted us and stopped right in front of us.
I crossed my arms and looked directly at Seamus. He met my eyes and quickly looked away.
"Scared, Seamus?" I whispered as I walked by him. It took all I could to stop myself from giggling.
I looked back at Harry. He didn't keep walking like I did. He had apparently stopped and come face to face with Ron.
"You're a right foul git, you know that?" Harry told Ron.
"You think so?" said Ron.
"I know so."
"Anything else?" Ron asked.
"Yeah. Stay away from me."
Harry walked away from Seamus and Ron and towards me.
"How was that?" he asked me.
I rolled my eyes and kept on walking. Harry took back his position at my side.
Then, two students blocked our path, holding the badges in their hand. They showed Cedric on a yellow background and then they spun to show Harry on a green background and the words, "Potter Stinks".
The girl looked directly at me when she said, "Harry Potter stinks!"
I crossed my arms again and gave her a cold stare.
She shut her mouth immediately. And then I threw in a little evil grin. Just for fun.
The boy didn't see me stare at the girl. He yelled, "Get lost Potter!"
Harry started to back away and give up, but I didn't. I stayed and gave the boy a cold stare, too. I'm on a roll! While Harry backed away like a coward, I walked past the two students and whispered, "You two better watch your backs."
They both nervously chuckled like they weren't sure whether I was joking or not. I'll show them I'm not. I laughed an evil laugh.
When I was sure they didn't see me anymore, I stood behind them and thought, These two need a tail. I pointed to the both of them and long rat tails grew from their butts. Yes! That'll show them.
I walked away slowly like nothing happened and waited for the screams.
"Chris, that was awesome!" Harry exclaimed as he caught up to me. We sat down on a bench.
"Yeah, no thanks to you, you coward!"
He looked down. "I won't back away next time."
"You better not!" I said.
"Thanks, though. For backing me up."
"No problem. I'm always here for you, Harry."
"Same here." He said back.
"Hey, Potter!" someone yelled. I looked up.
It was Draco Malfoy, the jerk who has a crush on me and calls Hermione a Mudblood. And he is also Harry's enemy. Kind of.
Anyway, he was sitting up in a tree and jumped down when I saw him.
"Hello, Chris. You're looking lovely as always," he said to me.
I stood up to give him a piece of my mind, but he took it the wrong way. He grabbed my hand and kissed it. HE KISSED MY HAND! EW!
I immediately backed away, grossed out, and started rubbing my hand on my pants to get the germs off.
"Ew, ew, ew!" I exclaimed.
"What? You don't like me?" he asked sarcastically.
"You're a -" I started to insult him, but Harry stood up and put his hand over my mouth. I stopped to let him talk. But Malfoy beat him to it.
"Why so tense, Potter? You see, my father and I have a bet. I don't think you're gonna last ten minutes in this tournament. My father disagrees. He thinks you won't last FIVE."
I scowled at him while rubbing my hand free of Malfoy germs.
"I don't care what you or your father think, Malfoy! He's vile and cruel, and you're just pathetic!" Harry yelled.
Harry started to walk away. Malfoy got angry and tried to cast a spell. Then, all of a sudden, Malfoy was gone. He was replaced by a ferret.
Harry turned around and noticed the ferret.
"Awesome, Chris! Keep him like that!" he shouted to me.
"What? I'm not doing that!" I exclaimed.
Mad-Eye Moody appeared from the shadows, holding his wand and making the ferret hover around in the air. He turned Malfoy into a ferret!
I started bursting out into a fit of giggles.
"I'll teach you to cast a spell when someone's back is turned!" he said.
Professor McGonagall came to investigate all the commotion. She saw Moody controlling the ferret.
"Professor Moody, what are you doing?" she asked.
"Teaching," he answered matter-of-factly.
"Is that a student?" McGonagall exclaimed.
"Technically, it's a ferret," Moody answered.
Moody kept the ferret hovering in the air, until he sent it up the leg of Crabbe's pants. He squirmed and jumped around. Moody looked over at Harry and I and winked.
Eventually, the ferret came out of the student's pants and Moody turned him back to normal.
"Aww, Professor! Why did you change him back?" I said.
"You don't like the human me?" Malfoy asked me.
"Let's just say that the ferret was cuter than you," I said.
Malfoy pretended to ignore it, but was clearly bothered by it. He turned to Moody and said, "My father will hear about this!"
"Is that a threat?" Moody asked.
Malfoy ran away before Moody could do anything else.
Professor McGonagall shooed everybody away and said to Moody, "We never use transfiguration spells as a punishment. Surely Dumbledore told you that."
Moody pretended to think. "He might've mentioned it…"
"Well, you should remember that," she said.
McGonagall glared one last time at Moody before she left. Then, Moody turned to Harry.
"Come with me," he said, motioning for him to follow.
Harry looked at me pleadingly. He obviously doesn't want to be left alone with Moody. Everyone thinks he's crazy.
"Umm, Professor?" I asked.
"May I come, too?" I asked, in my sweetest voice.
"I can't imagine why you'd want to…" he answered.
"Well, Harry's been getting bullied all day, except when he's with me, so I don't really want to leave his side," I lied.
"Okay, then. You may come. Let's go. This way," he said.
Wow! He believed me! No one's ever believed me before! Sure, Moody might be crazy, but I thought he was smart!
He led us away from the courtyard and inside. We walked down some stairs into what seemed like the basement. The basement? But his class is on one of the higher floors.
"It's really damp and dark down here. It's creepy." I said out loud.
"I like the dark," Moody said.
"That's not suspicious." I whispered sarcastically to Harry.
"What was that?" Moody snapped.
"Nothing," I said.
We reached the door at the end of a long hallway. The door was big, cold, and padlocked. Moody waved his wand, muttered a spell, and the locks opened. He led us inside a dark, boring room.
Harry and I explored. Moody's room was filled with a bunch of gadgets that I can't name. Magical gadgets, that is. I recognized one as a foal glass. It helps a wizard or witch keep an eye on their enemies. Uncle George has one, but he hasn't used it since he vowed not to use magic ever again.
Moody sat down and took something off. I thought it was his shoe. Until I saw a prosthetic leg by his chair. I grimaced.
Harry touched my back lightly to assure me that we're safe here. But still, I had an odd feeling from deep inside my gut, telling me that we aren't safe here. Something is wrong, but I can't put my finger on it.
Then, Harry motioned me to sit across from Moody. I shook my head. No way. There is no way that I'm sitting here, vulnerable to any surprises. I have to stand up, be alert. My body is itching to get out of here before something bad happens. Harry sensed my being alert.
He sat down to show me that nothing was wrong. Well, at least I won't be alone. I'd be out of here by now if I was alone. Harry patted the spot next to him. I sat.
The trunk on the floor of Moody's room made a noise. Like there was something trapped in there, trying to get out. Poor thing, whatever it is. Moody's probably torturing it. I want to free it so badly.
I scooted over closer to Harry. He put his hand on my back again.
"You wouldn't believe me if I told you what's in there," Moody said, nodding toward the trunk. "Now… what are you going to do about your dragon?"
"Oh, I just thought I'd… um…" Harry stuttered.
Oh God. He doesn't even have a plan.
"Listen Potter. Your friend, Diggory? He's better at magic than you'd think. And the girl, she's as much a fairy princess as I am. And Krum may look like his head is full of hot air, but Igor Karkaroff's is not. What are your strengths?" Moody asked.
"Umm… well…" Harry said.
"He's a great flier," I suggested.
"Good thing you're here, Godrick," Moody said.
"Yeah, I'm a fair flyer," Harry said humbly.
"Better than fair!" I said.
"But I'm not allowed a broom." Harry said.
"No, but you're allowed a wand." Moody said.
After we left Moody's office yesterday, I felt much better. But today is the first task of the tournament. I feel much worse than yesterday.
An arena big enough to fit everyone in Hogwarts was set up with a tent for the champions. I got a glimpse of the dragons on my way here. I hope Harry doesn't get the big, nasty one that looks like it's in a really bad mood. With my luck and Harry's luck, he will get that one. Fantastic.
Hermione, Ron and I were seated together in the Gryffindor section.
"Aren't you two worried about Harry?" I asked them.
"Yes!" Hermione said at the same time that Ron snorted and said "No."
Hermione and I scowled at him.
"When is this ridiculous fight going to end?" I asked.
"Never," Ron answered. "I'll never forgive him."
"Ron, Harry did not put his name in that cup!" I exclaimed.
"Oh, so now he's brainwashed you," Ron said.
"I am NOT brainwashed!" I yelled.
I stormed off toward the champion's tent. As I walked by, I heard many conversations. People were making bets, cheering and laughing.
When I got to the tent, I peeked inside to see Harry pacing back and forth. I sighed. Of course Harry was putting on that brave, I'm-not-worried-at-all act. For me.
I stepped inside and said, "I knew you were worried, too."
He jumped. He didn't hear me come in.
"I'm sorry," I said. Because I was. For everything.
"I… I'm just… it's so…" he sputtered. And then he sighed.
I stepped forward and wrapped my arms around him, pulling him into a Chris hug. Instead of grunting in pain, Harry wrapped his arms around me, returning the hug. All of a sudden, a big white flash interrupts the hug.
"What was that?" I asked, rubbing my eyes.
"Ugh. I dunno, but that hurt my eyes." Harry replied, rubbing his eyes.
"Mine, too." I said.
"Ah, young love!" A voice exclaimed. I turned to where the voice was coming from. I saw a woman, probably in her 30's or 40's, her white-blonde hair piled in a messy heap on top of her head with a pen sticking out of it. Next to her was a man holding a big camera.
"Oh no," Harry said.
"You know her?" I asked.
"Let me introduce myself. I'm Rita Skeeter. From the Daily Prophet? Maybe you've heard of me?" the woman said.
I shook my head no.
"You know, the newspaper?" she said.
"I don't read the newspaper," I said. I've seen Uncle George reading it, but I've never heard of this woman.
"What a shame. The youth of today is so wrapped up in technology," she sighed. "Ooh, I should write that down!"
She took her pen out her hair and a pad of paper out of her bag. The pen began to write down what she said by itself. She charmed it.
"I did an interview for her. Watch what you say. She'll turn it around and make it something completely different," Harry muttered to me.
"So, how long have you two known each other? Hmm? How long have you been dating this girl, Harry Potter?" she asked, the pen ready to write.
"Uh, we aren't dating." Harry said.
"Afraid to show his feelings," Rita muttered to her pen.
"Hey!" Harry exclaimed.
"Hi, I'm Chrislynn Godrick," I introduced myself to her.
"Yeah, I couldn't care less. WAIT! Did you say Chrislynn Godrick?" she exclaimed.
"Oh my God! We are so doing an interview! Contact me when you have the chance!" she said, giving me her card. It looked like this:
The Daily Prophet
Then, that faded away and was replaced by her phone number and the address of her office.
"Um, I'll keep that in mind," I lied.
She squealed in happiness. "I think we've got our front page story, Frank!" she said to the cameraman.
Viktor Krum came out of no where and said, "You have no business here. This tent is for champions and friends only," to Rita.
"Fine. We've got what we wanted anyway." she said and left.
Then, Hermione came into the tent.
"Harry!" she exclaimed and gave him a hug.
"How are you feeling? Okay?" she asked. Harry nodded and she continued, "The key is to concentrate. After that, you just have to…"
"Battle a dragon." Harry finished.
We gathered into a group hug.
"You'll do great, Harry. I'm sure of it," she said.
"Where's Ron?" Harry asked.
I went quiet.
"Um, he's with Seamus and Dean," Hermione answered.
"Did he talk to you guys? Did he… talk about me?" Harry asked.
"Well…" Hermione started, but I interrupted.
"Ron said he wasn't worried about you, that he'll never forgive you, and that I'm brainwashed because I believe that you didn't put your name in the cup. Then, I yelled 'I am not brainwashed' at him and came here." I said.
Harry smiled. Why is he smiling?
"He thinks I brainwashed you?" he said, laughing.
Hermione and I joined him in laughing.
Then, Dumbledore entered the tent along with Barty Crouch.
"Good day, champions," Dumbledore said. "Gather around me please."
The champions, Hermione, and I did as he said. Maybe Hermione and I shouldn't be here.
Dumbledore can't see me when I'm invisible, but I can see everything else, I thought. Then, I pointed to myself and watched my body disappear. I saw Hermione look around in confusion. I smiled and whispered, "I'm still here."
She nodded in understanding and turned to me (or where she thinks I am) and began to speak, "Can you -" she started.
"Miss Granger, what are you doing here?" Dumbledore asked, interrupting her.
"Oh, um, sorry. I was just leaving," she said and left.
"Anyway, Barty? The bag, please?" Dumbledore said.
Barty Crouch handed him a small bag pulled close with a little string.
"Alright, champions. You will now choose the dragon that you will battle," Barty instructed. "Put your hand in the bag and take one out."
Dumbledore held the bag in front of Fleur Delacour. She closed her eyes and stuck her hand in.
What's in the bag? I thought. I pointed to the bag and it became transparent. I gasped, almost a little too loudly. I can't help but gasp because the bag is filled with tiny versions of the dragons outside. I saw the big, nasty one that I was sure Harry would have to battle.
Fleur pulled out a small, green one.
"Ah, the Welsh Green. Mr. Krum…" said Barty.
Dumbledore held up the bag to Krum and he pulled out a red one.
"The Chinese Fireball. Ooh." said Barty.
Dumbledore help up the bag to Cedric.
"The Swedish Short-snout. Which leaves…" Barty trailed off.
"The Horntail." I heard Harry mutter.
"What's that, boy?" Barty asked.
The Horntail. That's the big, nasty one I saw. I knew he'd get that one.
Harry put his hand in the bag, even though he knew which one he'd get from his visit with Hagrid.
"The Hungarian Horntail," Barty said. "Okay, champions. Each of these represents a real, live dragon. Each of them had been given an egg to protect. Your objective is to get the egg. You have to complete this task, otherwise you cannot move on to the next task. Any questions?"
"Very well. Good luck everyone. Mr. Diggory at the sound of the cannon…" Dumbledore started.
The cannon sounded before Dumbledore could finish his sentence. Cedric prepared to battle his dragon. Cedric first, Fleur next, then Krum, and Harry last.
Dumbledore and Barty left the tent and the champions scattered around the tent to get ready.
"What are you still doing here?" Harry asked me. His back was to me.
Harry needs to see me now, I thought and pointed to myself.
"Harry, you're talking to the wall!" I said, materializing.
He spun around, taken by surprise.
"You didn't answer my question," he said.
"I wanted to see what dragon you got."
"You can't stay in this tent, Chris." he said. "You're not a champion."
"I know, I know. I'm leaving. But I'll be watching."
"And when you don't know what to do, ask yourself, 'What would Chris do?'. Then you're problems will be solved," I said.
He smiled. "I'll keep that in mind."
I quickly kissed him on the cheek and ran out before I could cry in front of everyone. Just a small, friendly peck on the cheek though. No one saw anything.
I joined Hermione and Neville in the stands.
"Where's Ron?" I asked her.
"Still with Seamus and Dean. He refuses to sit with us," she replied.
"Ugh. When is Ron going to stop being such a jerk?" I asked.
"I don't know, but it's all ridiculous to me," she replied.
Cedric battled his dragon successfully - and safely, I might add. Next was Fleur, who did great, and then Krum, who did great also.
"Three of our champions have completed their tasks successfully! They will move on to the next task. And now for the fourth and final contestant, Harry Potter!" Dumbledore's voice said on the loudspeaker.
Then, Harry entered the rocky arena below us.
Hermione, Neville, and I stood up and cheered for Harry. The rest of the crowd joined, except Ron.
The crowd quieted down and everyone sat back in their seats.
"Cross your fingers," I said to Hermione and Neville.
There is nothing between Harry and the egg but rocks. Harry sees his opportunity and makes a run for it. Then, the dragon appears.
My heart stopped.
Harry ran behind a big rock as the dragon flamed him. He stumbled and fell around the arena.
"Your wand, Harry!" Hermione shouted. I shouted, "Your wand!" along with her.
"Accio Firebolt!" Harry yelled, his wand in the air. A few seconds later, Harry's broom was flying through the air towards him. He jumped on and flied off, the dragon chasing him. The dragon burst through the crowd, stunning everyone.
They both disappeared towards Hogwarts.
"Oh my God. Where did they go?" I yelled.
"Oh no, oh no," Hermione was saying over and over.
Everyone was standing up, trying to see where they went.
"He's gonna die. He's gonna die. It's all my fault. I should've stopped him. He's gonna die," I said.
"He's not gonna die!" Neville exclaimed.
"It's my fault!" I said.
"No, nothing is your fault. Calm down." Neville tried to comfort me.
"I need to help him!" I yelled.
"No! That would be cheating!" Neville said.
"I DON'T CARE!" I yelled, starting to move forward. I began to call my broom to me, but then Neville grabbed my hands and put them behind my back. I started kicking, trying to get him to let go. His grip was loosening, but he still held on. Since when has Neville been so strong?
"You have to stay here, Chris. He needs you here. Harry needs you to stay here," Neville said.
I stopped kicking.
"You're right," I said, sitting down and putting my head in my hands.
Neville sat down next to me and put his hand on my shoulder.
"He'll be back," Neville assured me.
And sure enough, a few agonizing moments later, Harry came back. Without the dragon following behind. Everyone cheered. Hermione, Neville, and I stood up. We yelled and screamed and clapped as loud as we could. I was so happy, I was almost in tears. And he didn't even get the egg yet.
Harry waved to us and flew straight to the egg.
In the Gryffindor Common Room, everybody was crowded around Harry, myself included. We were celebrating Harry's victory. Well, he didn't win, but he's alive and he's got the egg. The Weasley twins lifted him up and put him on their shoulders. Harry was holding the egg above his head.
"We knew you wouldn't die, Harry!" George Weasley said.
"Lose a leg." Fred Weasley added.
"Or an arm." George added.
"Pack it in altogether." Fred said.
"NEVER!" both twins yelled simultaneously.
"Go on, Harry. What's the clue?" Seamus asked.
"Yeah, Harry. Open it!" I yelled.
"You want me to open it? Who wants me to open it?" Harry asked.
We all cheered.
Harry opened the egg and a deafening screech came out. He quickly closed it.
"What the bloody hell was that?" Harry exclaimed.
Then, Ron appeared in the doorway.
"Okay, everyone. Clear the room! Nothing to see here anymore!" I said, shooing everyone away.
I pretended to walk away with Hermione, who wanted to listen in on the conversation as much as I did.
Harry sat down on the couch, the egg in his lap, as Ron sat down next to him. Hermione and I crouched down behind the couch as quietly as we could. Hermione put her finger to her mouth to tell me to be quiet.
"Now I know that you'd have to be crazy to put your name in that goblet." Ron said.
"Oh, caught on, have you? Took you long enough." Harry said.
"It wasn't just me who thought that you had done it. People talked about you behind your back." Ron said.
"Yes, I know, thank you. That makes me feel loads better." Harry said sarcastically.
"At least I warned you about the dragons." Ron said.
"Uh, Hagrid did." Harry said.
"No, I did. Don't you remember? I told Hermione to tell you that Seamus told me that Parvati told Dean that Hagrid was looking for you. Seamus never actually told me anything. It was all me. I thought you'd be alright after you figured that out." Ron said.
"Who could possibly figure that out?" Harry asked.
"… I suppose I was a bit distraught." Ron said.
I stifled my laughter. Hermione and I walked away from the couch to giggle.
"Boys," Hermione said, shaking her head.
"Hi Cedric!" Hermione and I said in unison.
Harry and Ron didn't even look up when Cedric Diggory came to visit us in the Great Hall. Today we have a free class to do anything we want! Well, there is the rules that state that we have to 1.) stay in the Great Hall and 2.) look like we're doing something important. Hermione, Harry, Ron and I are pretending to study.
Anyway, Cedric and his friends just walked in. He spotted us and walked over to our table.
"How've you guys been?" Cedric asked.
"Oh, you know." Hermione said, in a daze.
"Uh, no. No, I don't know." Cedric said, confused.
"Um, well I've been okay. I've been a little bit worried though." I said. "You know, about you and Harry in this tournament."
Both Harry AND Cedric sighed in frustration at the same time.
"I told you I'll be fine. And I was." Harry said.
"As did I." Cedric said.
"Don't you hate how worried she is?" Harry asked Cedric.
"Yeah, it's like I'm some-"
"Hello! I'm still here!" I exclaimed.
"Sorry," they both muttered.
"Hey, the mail is here!" someone shouted.
Then, everyone's owl flew in with their mail. Hedwig, Harry's owl, flew in with a letter from Sirius and dropped it right in front of Harry.
"Good girl, Hedwig." Harry praised.
Serena, my owl, flew in. She's white, like Harry's, but with brown spots here and there. She came in and dropped a letter from Uncle George.
"Thank you, Serena. Good girl." I praised. Then, she and Hedwig flew off to go back to the Owlry.
I opened up the letter and began reading:
I miss you so much. I know you're older and you can take care of yourself, but I can't help but worry. That's something we have in common. I hope you're doing well.
I've heard things about Hogwarts. I understand that the Triwizard Tournament is being held this year. I've also heard that Harry is competing. Is that true? People talk about how dangerous and life-threatening the tournament is. Isn't Harry a bit too young? Anyway, keep an eye on that Harry. He could get seriously hurt. Or worse. Well, we don't want to think of that, do we? But just keep that in mind for me, will you? I don't want you entering anything like that. Why did Harry enter? Is he mad?
Well, I only have so much room to write. I love you. And so do your parents. They would be so proud of you.
Love, Uncle George
P.S. tell Harry, Hermione, and Ron that Uncle George said hello!
Oh, Uncle George! I'm getting all teary-eyed! That last part about my parents hit a soft spot somewhere.
"Chris, are you okay?" Harry asked all of a sudden.
I looked up. "Huh? Oh, yes, I'm fine." I said, turning away so no one would see my tears. I wiped my eyes with my sleeve and turned back around.
"Uncle George said hello to you guys," I said to Harry, Hermione, and Ron.
"Aw, I love Uncle George! Tell him I said hello back!" Hermione exclaimed.
"Same here," Harry said at the same time that Ron said, "Ditto."
"Okay, I will." I replied.
"Does anyone have a newspaper?" Hermione said loudly.
"Why? Are you going to read about something boring like the stock market?" Ron joked.
"Here, Hermione. I have one." Cedric said.
"Thank you, Cedric." she said in a daze.
Cedric held out the newspaper to her. Hermione continued to stare at him in a daze.
"Hermione? Here," Cedric said again.
She kept staring.
"Hermione?" Cedric asked again.
I kicked her leg under the table.
"Ouch! Oh… thanks… Cedric." Hermione stuttered, coming back to reality.
Cedric went back to his friends.
"Hermione, could you be anymore pathetic?" Ron joked.
She scowled at him.
"If Chris hadn't kicked your leg, then you would have started drooling!" Harry joked, and we all laughed.
"So why did you want the newspaper anyway?" I asked, changing the subject. I could tell that Hermione was getting embarrassed.
"I wanted to see if there was anything about Harry in here," she replied.
"The lady from the Daily Prophet just interviewed Harry. It can't be in there yet!" Ron said.
"Harry Potter, aged 12, suspect entrant in the Tri-wizard Tournament…" Hermione read from the newspaper.
"Well, I've been wrong before." Ron said.
"Chris! There's something in Harry's article about you!" Hermione exclaimed.
"What?" I yelled.
"While in the champion's tent, trying to talk to some of the champions, I met The Girl Who Lived herself! That's right, I talked to Chrislynn Godrick! She was visiting her boyfriend before the tournament started. Who is her boyfriend, you ask? He is none other than Harry Potter, the 12 year old mentioned before. I know what you're thinking, I thought the same thing. Isn't Harry too young for her? Harry denied that he's dating the beautiful 14 year old girl, but he's obviously in denial. Or is he too afraid to talk about his emotions?" Hermione read from the newspaper.
"Oh, my God, I'm going to KILL that woman!" I exclaimed.
Who does she think she is?
"12 year old?" Harry exclaimed.
"And look! There's a picture!" Hermione pointed to a black and white picture of Harry and I hugging.
In the magical world of witches and wizards, pictures move. So, in this particular picture, Harry and I hugged over and over again. The caption under it read, "The beautiful Chrislynn sharing a meaningful hug with her man, Harry Potter."
I'm going to kill her!
"12 year old?" Harry exclaimed again. "She said I'm 12!"
I got up and started to walk out.
"Wait, where are you going?" Harry asked.
"To find that woman and teach her a lesson!" I answered.
I got about half way there until I felt someone grab my arm and turn me around. It was Harry.
"Harry, let me go," I said because he was still holding my arm.
"No. I can't let you do this. You'll get in a lot of trouble with the Ministry." he replied.
"Look, I - No, you're right. I'm sorry. But someone needs to go down to her office and straighten this whole thing out." I said. She gave me her card, which has her address on it…
"Okay, we'll go to her office. Another time." Harry said.
"Tomorrow," I said.
"We have classes to go to tomorrow. We can't just skip school!" Harry exclaimed.
"We'll go to Dumbledore and tell him. He'll understand. He'll let us go." I said.
He sighed. "Okay, but I'm coming. I don't want people thinking that I'm 12." Harry said.
I laughed. "It could be worse. You could be 11."
He looked at me with this Ha-ha-very-funny look. I laughed again.
We both walked back to the table our friends were sitting at. Cedric and his friends had left. But I wanted to tell him that he did great at the tournament! Oh, forget it. You have a boyfriend, remember? I reminded myself. Yeah, a non-existent one. Where has Derrick been?
"Parcel for Mr. Weasley!" a little boy - probably a first year - said when Harry and I sat back down.
"Thank you, Nigel." Ron said. I think that was a dismissal, but the boy stood still.
"Not now, Nigel!" Ron said to him. I noticed that Nigel was staring at Harry. Nigel left.
"I promised that he would get Harry's autograph," Ron said after Nigel left. "You're his idol." he said to Harry.
Ron looked at the package that Nigel left for him.
"Oh, Mum's sent me something," he said, opening it. Ron took out a long, frilly robe. It looked like something a king back in the Renaissance would wear. I don't think people here know what fashion is. I'd never be caught DEAD in that!
"A dress?" Ron exclaimed. Everyone's attention was on him.
"It does match your eyes. Is there a bonnet?" Hermione joked. She, Harry, and I laughed.
"Ginny!" Ron called his little sister. "This must be for you, not me."
"Ugh. I'm not wearing that! It's ghastly!" she exclaimed. Hermione laughed.
"What are you laughing about?" Ron asked her.
"Those are dress robes! For you!" she said.
"Dress robes? For what?" Ron asked.
Well, we soon found out what the dress robes were for. Professor McGonagall held an assembly a few classes later.
"The Yule Ball has been a tradition of the Tri-wizard Tournament for many, many years," she began. "On Christmas Eve night, we and our guests gather in the Great Hall for well-mannered frivolity. Basically, you dance. In a well-mannered way. As representatives of the host school, I expect you all to be on your best behavior. Put your best foot forward. Literally, since the Yule Ball is a dance." she explained.
All the boys groaned while all the girls chatted excitedly.
"Hermione, this may be your chance with Krum!" I said to her.
"You have a crush on Krum?" Ginny exclaimed.
"Shhh! Sorry, Hermione, I shouldn't have said that!" I said.
"Silence!" McGonagall ordered. She put on an old-fashioned record player. Classical music began to play. What is this? Bach? Beethoven?
"Now to dance," McGonagall continued, "To dance is to let the body breathe. Every couple should flow easily together, dancing in swift motions."
Laughter came from the boys. Ron whispered something to Seamus.
"Mr. Weasley!" McGonagall called. "Join me."
Ron got up.
"What am I doing?" Ron asked.
"Put your right hand on my waist." she ordered.
Whistles and laughter came from the boys and the girls.
"The twins are never gonna let him forget this!" I whispered to Hermione and Ginny. They giggled.
Ginny whispered what I said to Harry, who laughed and whispered it to the twins.
"Never!" they said at the same time.
"Bend your arm like this." McGonagall ordered Ron. Professor McGonagall had her left hand on Ron's shoulder and her right arm, bent, with her right hand holding his left hand. Ron placed his right hand awkwardly on her waist.
"One, two, three. One, two, three. One, two, three." McGonagall counted, stepping forward and back with each number.
"Now," she continued. "everyone up."
All the girls, including me, eagerly stood up and came to the middle of the room. I looked around, seeing if I could find Derrick or Harry. Or even Cedric.
Well, I found them. But they weren't getting up. All the boys were still seated.
"Come on, boys. Get up and find a dance partner." McGonagall commanded.
Only Neville stood.
"Hermione, you can't just sit here and admire him from far away." I said to her.
We were out by the lake with Ginny and Parvati. I watched Hermione as she stared at Viktor Krum walking by. He was training with a weight. A million girls followed him, giggling and staring at his biceps. That's exactly what Hermione was doing.
"Hermione… ?" I said, trying to get her attention. "You might as well go follow him with those pathetic girls."
"What?" she asked, coming back to reality.
"Nothing!" I lied.
Normally Hermione would've caught my lie, but she was too much in a daze to even realize I said something, let alone that I lied.
Ginny laughed. She must've heard what I said. At least she wasn't staring at Krum. Parvati was.
"Ginny, you're sane." I said.
"True," she said, confused.
"I need someone sane to talk to." I said.
"Ahh," she nodded, understanding, and laughed.
"Do you have someone to go to the Yule Ball with?" I asked her.
She blushed and hid her face.
I gasped in excitement. "Who is it?" I asked.
"Neville…" she answered.
"Longbottom? Neville Longbottom?" I asked. I didn't expect that!
"Yes, is there another Neville?" she asked.
"No, but I just… didn't see that coming I guess!"
"Go ahead, laugh. But I don't care what you or the others think." she said.
"What? No! I don't think it's funny. It's sweet!" I said.
"Oh, thank you!" she exclaimed.
"What's going on?" Hermione asked, back to reality again.
"While you and Parvati were drooling," I paused. Hermione looked at Parvati, who had a guilty expression on her face. I continued, "I asked Ginny who she is going to the Yule Ball with."
"Who?" Parvati asked excitedly.
"Neville," Ginny answered.
"Neville?" Hermione and Parvati exclaimed at the same time.
"Yeah what's wrong with that?" I asked, hinting that they better not laugh and try being supportive.
"Oh, nothing!" Hermione answered.
"I think it's great!" Parvati exclaimed.
"Thanks you, guys! I thought you were going to laugh." Ginny said.
"Of course we wouldn't, Ginny." I said with a reassuring smile.
"So Parvati," I changed the subject. "Who are you going with?"
"I don't know… no one's asked me yet." She answered.
"So? How about the girl asks the boy for a change?" I said.
"Easy for you to say." Parvati said.
"Yeah. You already have a date. You don't need to ask Derrick, and Derrick doesn't have to ask you." Hermione agreed.
"Not true! Just because Derrick and I are going out, doesn't mean that we're automatically going together. I mean, what if Derrick doesn't want to go to the Yule Ball?" I asked.
"Everyone has to go to the Yule Ball." Hermione said matter-of-factly.
"Okay, you made your point. But I'm still asking Derrick just to show you two that you don't need to wait around for a stupid boy. Chances are, they're waiting, too." I said.
I started to march back to Hogwarts to find Derrick, but stopped when I thought of something.
"Hermione," she looked up when I said her name. "You are going to ask Krum unless he asks you by the end of today. And Parvati, you're going to ask… Wait who do you want to ask?"
"Harry," she answered.
I continued, "You are going to ask Ha- WHAT?"
"I want to go with Harry," she said.
"Oh… oh, okay. You're going to ask him," I trailed off.
And with that, I marched off.
Parvati likes Harry? This is news. This is terrible news! I mean, for Parvati. Because Harry has a crush on Cho Chang. Parvati will just get her heart broken. I have to tell her that.
No! I can't tell her that! Harry wouldn't want me to tell anyone that he likes Cho Chang. I can't break that promise.
I thought about this the whole walk to Hogwarts. When I got to the Owlry I stopped to check on Serena.
Inside the Owlry, tons of owls were sitting on their ledges. They were either sleeping, out getting mail for their owners, out delivering mail from their owners, or pooping. That's why I don't enjoy coming here very often. The poop is disgusting. It's everywhere. How am I supposed to think clearly with this smell?
Clean up this disgusting poop, I thought. I then waved my hand in a circle and the poop disappeared.
"Serena!" I called.
She came flying down to me from her ledge. I checked her leg. No mail. Then Hedwig came flying down after Serena. They were probably playing with each other.
What's this? There's mail attached to Hedwig's leg. Harry's name was printed on one side. I flipped it over to the other side.
Nothing. It must be from Sirius. He doesn't want people to know where he is, besides Harry, Hermione, Ron, Dumbledore, and I. And Professor Lupin. They're old friends.
It's probably important. Should I open it, then close it, and give it to Harry? I can make it look like it was never opened. Or should I mind my business and just give it to Harry without looking at it? A little peek wouldn't hurt… No, I can't do that. I'll just take it to Harry.
That reminds me! I have to write back to Uncle George. With the poop gone and my head clearer, I can write it here. Why not? There's a bench outside I think. If there isn't I can make one with magic…
No need for magic. There is a bench.
I need a piece of paper and a pen, I thought, snapping my fingers. A piece of paper appeared in my lap and a pen in my hand. I began writing:
Dear Uncle George,
I love hearing from you. It's like your voice reads your words aloud in my head. It reminds me of home. I miss home. Have you been watering the plants? Kept up the vacuuming? It must be hard doing it the Muggle way. Don't worry. Before you know it, I'll be back home. No more vacuuming!
So, about the Triwizard Tournament. Yes, Harry is in it. Bless his soul. We don't know how his name got into the goblet, but I do know that Harry did not cheat. He would never. Don't worry. I'm keeping an eye on him. He completed the first task safely and successfully already. He had to battle a dragon! The dragons were so scary, but so magnificent! The beautiful scales acted like permanent armor, covering the entire body except the eyes. And the eyes! Black slits in yellow pupils. And they're wingspan was about the length of their bodies. About 30 feet maybe. Including the tail. I'm jealous of them. There, I said it. I didn't tell anyone that. So shhh. Don't say a word about this. They're so beautiful. Giant, winged lizards. They get to fly in great altitudes. We can't fly as high as they can on brooms. We'd run out of oxygen. But they're dangerous. Harry could've died! I admit it, I wish I was Harry then. He got to see them up close.
Anyway, Professor McGonagall told us about the Yule Ball. It's a dance. "Well-mannered frivolity" is what she called it. I can't wait for it. You don't have to send me a dress. I can make one myself with magic.
We send you all our love,
P.s. If you don't tell me the history of our last name soon, I will ask Dumbledore. I'm sure he knows.
I folded the letter (Three times. No more, no less.) and put it into an envelope.
"Serena!" I called.
She flew down to me.
"Good girl," I praised.
I gave the letter to her.
"Bring it to Uncle George." I told her and gave her a few sunflower seeds. Those are her favorite.
She understood and flew off in the direction of home.
In the Common Room after dinner, Harry, Ron, Hermione and I were talking about the Yule Ball.
"At this rate, Harry, you and I are going to be the only ones without a date to the ball." Ron said to Harry.
I rolled my eyes.
"Well, us and Neville," he added.
Harry nodded. "But he could always take himself."
They both laughed.
"I wouldn't be laughing if I were you," I said to them.
They looked up at me, puzzled.
"Yes. It might interest you to know that Neville has already got a date." Hermione said.
Ron gasped. "Now I'm depressed."
"How do you two know that and we don't?" Harry asked.
"His date told us herself," I said.
Fred walked by us and dropped a note by Ron. Ron picked up the piece of paper and read it to himself.
"What does it say?" Hermione asked.
Ron read it aloud so that only we could hear. "Hurry up and ask someone before all the good ones are gone!"
I looked at Fred and George who were talking with a couple of girls. They must be the twin's dates. Fred looked at me and winked.
"Well it looks like they already have dates, too," I observed out loud.
"Speaking of dates, have you talked to Derrick?" Hermione asked me.
"Well… no. I was going to, but then I remembered I had to write back to Uncle George, so I stopped at the Owlry. And… I guess I forgot."
"You mean you're just stalling," Hermione said.
"Well," I started to protest.
"Get a move on, Ron!" George yelled as he walked by just then.
Ron sighed. Then he turned to Hermione. "Well, you're a girl."
"Good observation!" she snapped.
"It's embarrassing for us to go alone, but for a girl it's even worse," Ron said.
"I'm not going alone!" Hermione yelled. Then more softly she said, "Goodnight, Chris. Goodnight, Harry."
Ron's eyes widened. "What does she mean?"
"I don't know. I told her to ask Krum, but she didn't yet." I said.
"Then who is it?" Harry asked.
"I'll find out tomorrow," I said.
"Blimey, Harry, even she's got a date! We really have to hurry." Ron said to Harry.
"Anyway," I started to say something about going to Rita Skeeter's office tomorrow, but Ron cut me off.
"I'm going to bed. Maybe I'll feel better tomorrow. Goodnight," he said.
Harry and I watched him leave.
"Anyway," I tried again, pausing to see if anyone would cut me off again. When no one did, I continued, "About tomorrow. We have to see Rita Skeeter."
"Oh, that's right. But we have to ask Dumbledore first," Harry said.
"Okay. Just as long as I get to teach that woman a lesson." I said.
"Alright. Want to meet here before classes?"
"Okay, I'm going to bed. Night."
"Night, Harry. See you in the morning," I replied.
"Ready to go?" Harry asked me.
We're in the Common Room where Harry said to meet the night before.
"Yeah," I replied.
"Do you think Dumbledore will let us go?" Harry asked.
"Of course. Just let me do the talking. Why, are you nervous?" I said.
"Then let's do this," I said.
I took Harry's hand, pointed to myself, and thought, Dumbledore's office. And away we went. One second, we were in the Common Room. The next second, we were standing in front of Dumbledore's office door.
I knocked on the door three times. "Professor Dumbledore? May we come in?" I called.
"Yes. You may come in, Chrislynn," he said.
Dumbledore sat at his desk, motioning with his hand for the door to close behind us. With magic. What's more courteous than magic? Without it, we'd have to close the door ourselves.
"Sit," Dumbledore pointed to two chairs in front of his desk.
I crossed my legs and placed my hands in my lap.
Sitting up straight, I said, "Professor, Harry and I would like to get permission from you to skip a few classes today."
"What makes you think I'd let you do that?"
"Well, you've read the article on Harry in The Daily Prophet right?" I asked.
"Yes," he replied.
"Harry and I would like to visit Rita Skeeter to do another interview with her," I said.
"Oh, so you mean you would like to fix everything that she twisted up in her article?" Dumbledore asked.
"Yes, that is what we plan to do," I said.
"Harry?" Dumbledore asked.
Harry looked up. "Yes?"
"Do you want to do what she said also or is she just dragging you along?" Dumbledore asked.
I scowled. Harry chuckled and said, "No, she isn't dragging me along."
"Okay. I believe you. You may only skip the first half of the classes you have, so make it quick."
"Oh, thank you, Professor! I knew you'd understand," I said.
"Go now. Oh, and can I ask something first?" Dumbledore asked.
"Of course, Professor," I said.
"You two aren't really dating are you?"
"No!" Harry and I exclaimed at the same time.
"I assure you, that is just a rumor, sir." I said.
"Of course it's not true, sir." Harry added.
Dumbledore smiled. "You may go now."
"So this is her office?" Harry asked.
"No, the sign just says 'Daily Prophet' for no reason, and my magic failed for the first time," I said sarcastically. Harry looked at me blankly. "I'm just kidding!" I said.
"Oh," he laughed.
We're standing in front of an office building in Diagon Alley. After leaving Dumbledore, I took Harry's hand again and we Apparated in front of this office building.
"My gosh, it looks like this place is abandoned on the outside," I observed.
"Yeah but I bet it looks completely different on the inside," Harry said.
There's only a few people walking along Diagon Alley. Everyone's either at work, at school, or at home. Harry and I got a few stares from curious shoppers.
"Well, abandoned or not, you ready?" I asked.
He nodded. "Let's go."
We walked inside to find that Harry was right. It looks completely different on the inside. The main lobby's floors were made of something shiny. Marble maybe? The walls were painted to match. Our footsteps echoed loud enough for the secretary to hear. She looked away from her computer and said in a nasally voice, "May I help you?"
"Yes, we're looking for the office of The Daily Prophet." I said.
"Do you have an appointment?" Nasally Secretary asked.
"You can't go without an appointment."
"Oh? Do you know who I am?" I asked.
"A child who should be in school?" she snapped.
"I'm Chrislynn Godrick. The Girl Who Lived… ? And this is Harry Potter. The Boy Who Lived… ?" I paused, waiting for her to say something like "Oh, I'm terribly sorry! You can go up right now." But she didn't. She just stared at me blankly.
"So… ?" she finally said.
I sighed. "Okay, you leave me no choice."
She raised her eyebrows.
Let us go to the office. We don't need an appointment. Be a good secretary and let us go. I pushed the thought into her mind, trying to persuade her to let us go.
I watched her expression as I worked my magic. At first she looked confused, but then she smiled with recognition and said, "Go on up. Sorry to keep you waiting. Third floor." She returned to her computer.
We went into the elevator and I punched the 3 button. In a few seconds, the doors opened. There was a plaque on the wall that had the names of employees and their office locations. I scanned the list for Rita Skeeter.
Skeeter, Rita…..Room 303, I read. "Come on, Harry," I said and started down the hallway.
I stopped at the door. I listened and heard the sounds of a woman yelling on the other side of the door. "No, I told you already… I know that's what he really said but that's not what the readers want… Yes, I'm saying… No, we aren't lying exactly, just stretching the truth… Of course it's a good idea! Now do what I tell you! You work for me! And I tell you what to do and you do it! Or else you don't get paid, you imbecile! I could fire you RIGHT NOW if I wanted to!"
I looked at Harry and whispered, "You better let me handle this."
"What do you mean? You know, you can't always do everything for me like I'm a kid! I can handle things myself!" he protested.
I sighed. "Fine. You handle it yourself then. But don't ask me for help."
Harry nodded. I stepped away from the door, and motioned to it, telling Harry to go ahead.
He pressed his ear to the door, listening for Rita, probably waiting for the right moment to knock.
"Got it? Now don't tell my boss about this. I might get fired. Okay?" she said, calming down. "I like my job, and I want to keep it."
Harry looked at me, straightening up and clearing his throat, then turned back to the door. He knocked three times.
"Frank, if that's you, I swear I'm -" Rita started, then changed her mind. "I mean, uh, come in!" she said more cheerily.
Harry opened the door and led the way inside.
"Oh, hello there, Harry Potter!" Rita exclaimed. Then she saw me come in after Harry. "Chrislynn Godrick! How nice!"
I closed the door behind me and sat down next to Harry in front of Rita's desk.
"So why do I get the pleasure of your visit today, hmmm?" she asked, looking at me like she was expecting an answer. She just stared at me blankly while I remained silent. Harry said he wanted to handle this himself, so be it.
Harry finally cleared his throat, getting her attention, and said, "We'd like to set up another interview."
"Oh?" Rita said, confused.
"Yes, Chris and I both would like to do another interview."
"Why is that?" she asked.
"Well, we found some… errors in the interview you did with me and we'd like to correct them in another interview." Harry stated professionally.
"What sort of errors?" Rita asked.
"Like how you said I am twelve years old, which is not true."
Rita frowned and started to protest, but Harry continued.
"And you said that Chris and I are dating, which, again, is not true."
I nodded. "Well, I'm terribly sorry…" Rita said.
I smiled. She understands her mistake. This is a good start.
"But I'm afraid I can't help you," Rita finished.
"What?" I blurted out.
"Why not?" Harry exclaimed.
"I know you're not really twelve. I know you're not really dating. But, you see, darlings, I added those 'errors' on purpose," Rita answered.
"Why the bloody hell would you do that?" Harry yelled.
"Because it creates drama. Drama is what the readers want. Drama sells the newspaper. Drama gets me my paycheck at the end of the week. Drama is what puts food on my table. Do you get it?" Rita said.
"I'll show you drama," I mumbled under my breath.
"What was that, dear?" Rita asked.
"Nothing," I looked at Harry. His expression told me to shut up.
"Please, just help us this once," Harry pleaded.
"No. I already told you, I cannot help you." Rita said.
I sighed. This is so frustrating!
"But," Rita started. I looked up. "Maybe we can set up a different interview with Chrislynn and she could clear up the rumors I started?"
Harry breathed a sigh of relief.
"No!" I blurted out again. I can't keep my mouth shut, can I?
"What?" Harry said, surprised.
"Well, why not? You said you wanted to fix the 'errors'." Rita said.
"We're not doing another interview with her," I said to Harry, ignoring Rita.
"Come on. Do you know how much publicity this is giving you two?" Rita said.
"You mean the publicity it's giving you," I snapped.
Rita's mouth closed. Then opened. Then closed again.
"Can we please talk? Privately?" Harry asked me.
I followed him to an empty corner of the room. With my back facing Rita and Harry facing me, I crossed my arms and stated, "We aren't doing an interview."
"Don't be stubborn. Just because you hate her, doesn't mean we won't fix this," Harry said in a whisper.
"I am not being stubborn, Harry! Don't you see?" I whispered back.
"See what?" Harry asked.
"A different interview isn't going to make a difference. She'll still twist my words to her desire to make it more 'dramatic'." I said, putting air quotes around the word dramatic.
Realization crossed Harry's face. "Oh. I see. Sorry for calling you stubborn."
"It's okay. I can be stubborn sometimes." I said.
"Are you two done?" Rita asked, impatient.
"Yes," I answered.
Harry and I sat back down.
"Good. We're doing the interview, right?" Rita looked at me for an answer, but Harry spoke.
"We've decided we aren't doing the interview," Harry stated.
"What? But isn't that what you came for?" Rita said, shocked. She was sure she'd get her way. Ha!
I blocked out Harry and Rita's argument and thought of what I could do (with magic) to fix this. I could do a spell that would make her tell the truth from now on… No, then she'd be telling her secrets to every passing stranger. I could do a spell that would make her tell the truth in the articles she writes. No, then the article would be boring, she'd get fired, and the Daily Prophet would just go downhill from there. Who knows what that will lead to. I don't want to be responsible for that. What can I do that will fix these rumors? That's all we came to do, but it would be nice if I got rid of all the other lies Rita's put in that newspaper. But I shouldn't get involved…
"Chris… Chris?" Harry tried to get my attention.
"Oh, sorry. Didn't hear you. What?" I said, coming back to Rita's office.
"Let's go now!" Harry snapped. He's obviously still irritated from his argument with Rita.
"Oh, sorry." I said again. Harry and I got up and left Rita's office.
Harry led the way to the main lobby. Once we were away from any roaming workers, Harry stopped and turned around.
"So what are you planning?" Harry asked.
"You were planning something weren't you? You kind of spaced out back there. I could practically see the wheels turning in your head, Chris. What are you thinking?"
"I think I know what I'm going to do. I'm going to cast a spell that will get rid of all of yesterday's newspapers and replace them with new ones that say nothing but the truth. Then everyone who has already read yesterday's newspaper will forget they ever read it." I said proudly. I'm pretty proud of myself for thinking that up.
"You can do that?" Harry was amazed.
"Well, what will the new newspapers say?" he asked.
"They will say you're fourteen, not twelve, and nothing about me whatsoever." I answered.
"Sounds good. Thanks."
"No problem," I smiled.
"Okay, well, you better do it now. Dumbledore will be angry." Harry stated.
"Right." I said. I walked to the Nasally Secretary's desk.
"How may I help you?" she asked, with her nasally voice, without looking up.
"May I have yesterday's Daily Prophet, please?" I asked sweetly.
"Sure, here you go," she said, handing me a copy.
"Thank you." I walked back to where Harry stood. Holding the Daily Prophet in my left hand and pointing to it with my right, eyes closed, I thought, Replace all the copies of this newspaper with new copies stating that Harry is fourteen, there is nothing going on between me and Harry, and more information on the tournament. Everyone will forget what the old copies say.
After the spell was completed, and I opened my eyes, I saw that the newspaper I was holding had changed a bit. The old headline had said, "Potter dating Godrick?" The new headline says, "Potter enters Triwizard Tournament along with 3 others!"
"Done!" I exclaimed.
Harry read the headline. "Amazing," he whispered.
If I had a mirror, I would probably see myself beaming with pride.
"If you don't mind me asking, why did you close your eyes?" he asked me.
"To concentrate. When I do a lot of magic, it takes more concentration and more energy. The bigger the magic, the bigger the amount of concentration and energy it takes. Closing my eyes helps me shut out the world around me and focus on the task at hand. It makes me a bit tired." I answered.
"Oh. What happens if you use most of the energy you have in you?" Harry asked.
"I'd probably pass out. But that hasn't happened yet." I said.
"Okay, so, problem solved. Can we go now?" I asked.
I grabbed Harry's hand and cast the spell to get us back to Hogwarts.
When we got back to Hogwarts, no one came up to either me or Harry and asked us about Rita's rumor. No one whispered to their friend, pointing at us, as we walked by in the hallway. My job is done.
"Chris!" a voice called out to me.
I was walking towards the main courtyard from the Owlry. Serena had just given a letter to me from Uncle George.
I looked up to see Hermione running to me. She looked as excited as she would be if she won the lottery!
"What's got you so happy?" I asked.
"I did it!" she exclaimed.
"I asked Krum!"
"Oh, my god! Finally! What did he say?" I exclaimed.
"Can we talk while we walk? What class do you have next?"
"Divination," I answered.
"Okay, good. My class is on the way there." Hermione said.
"So are you going to tell me what happened or what?" I asked.
"Well," she began, falling into step beside me. "That night when Ron and Harry were talking about the Ball, it got me thinking. Maybe you're right. I shouldn't wait. Then Ron really convinced me when he got me angry. So then I decided I would ask Krum. That's why I said I was going to the Ball with someone when Ron teased me about not having a date. But I do now! The next day, while you and Harry went to see Rita, I marched right up to Krum while he was lifting weights on the beach and asked him to the Ball. And he said, 'Hermione, I would love to go with you. I wanted to ask you myself, but I was too afraid you wouldn't like me.' You were so right, Chris! Thank you so much!"
"No problem, Hermione," I said. "I'm so proud of you!"
"Thanks again. Now I have to go to class. See you later!" she said before she ran off.
So my advice worked. Maybe I should take my own advice. It worked for Hermione. I'll find Derrick after Divination.
I found Derrick in the Divination courtyard right as I got out of class.
"Derrick!" I yelled.
He was talking with a couple of his friends about who-knows-what when I saw him. He turned around and met me halfway.
"Oh, hey Chris!" he said, putting his arm around me and pulling me back towards his friends.
"Guys, look who it is, it's Chris!" he then planted a kiss on my cheek.
I pushed him away gently and said, "Derrick, I want to talk to you."
He looked at me blankly.
"Oh! Sure just give me a second." he said.
He explained to his group of friends that he'll be right back while I waited on a nearby bench. His friends will probably walk closer to us to eavesdrop anyway.
I watched them laugh together at some joke I didn't hear. Derrick's never going to remember I'm here, waiting for him, unless one of his friends remember and tell him.
Just then I saw one of his friends point to me and then Derrick turn around to finally realize I'm still here. He saw the anger on my face and quickened his pace coming towards me.
"Sorry, Chris. Pete just told us the best joke ever and -"
"I want to talk to you about the Ball," I interrupted him.
"Oh," he said, sitting down next to me.
"Everyone's got dates now and I feel like you've been avoiding asking me." I explained.
"Well, I thought that since we're already dating then it wasn't a question. I thought that I wouldn't have to ask. Neither do you," Derrick replied.
"That's what I thought, too, but I was talking to Hermione, Parvati, and Ginny about it and they said -"
"Hermione, Parvati, and Ginny don't know me like you do. I want you to know that I wasn't avoiding you at all. I would never do that." he told me.
"BUT if you want me to make it set in stone… Chris?" he said.
"Do you want to go to the Yule Ball with me?" he asked.
"I would love that!" I said.
"Great! Now we are officially going together. Happy now?" he said.
"Good." He kissed me softly on the lips.
"Now I have to go. See you later!" he said, running off.
I feel much better now.
Over dinner, Hermione and I were talking about the Ball, while Harry and Ron were still sulking about not having dates.
"I took my own advice and asked Derrick about the Ball. Turns out, you guys were wrong, Hermione! Derrick just thought that it was obvious that we'd go together. That's exactly what I said! But, no, you three had to tell me otherwise!" I told Hermione.
"I'm sorry!" she replied.
"I felt so embarrassed for asking about it." I admitted.
"You shouldn't have felt embarrassed. You just wanted to make sure." Harry said.
"I know… "
"Speaking of asking people to the Ball… " Harry trailed off.
All of our eyebrows raised in unison.
"I asked Cho to the Ball." he said.
"Oh! What did she say?" I asked.
"She said… no." Harry said with a hint of sadness.
"What? Why not?" Hermione exclaimed.
"Cedric already asked her and she said yes."
"Oh I see." Hermione said.
"You okay?" I asked him.
"I'm fine." he replied halfheartedly.
"You know, Harry, I uh think you should ask Parvati to the Ball. I mean, it's just a suggestion. Think about it. She's a nice girl and she doesn't have a date." I said.
"I second that!" Hermione said.
He did think about it. For only a few seconds. "Hmm. That's a good idea. I think I will!" he said.
"And, Ron, she has a nice sister who doesn't have a date either." I told him.
"I was actually thinking about asking Fleur." he replied.
"Fleur?" I exclaimed.
"Good luck with that, mate." Harry said.
"Well, when that - I mean IF that doesn't work out, you should ask Parvati's sister, Padma." I suggested again, trying to get Ron to get the hint that asking Fleur will just end unsuccessfully and in embarrassment, and it will be better to just ask Padma, who doesn't have a date yet.
"Sure. After I ask Fleur." Ron said.
We all sighed in frustration.
"What?" Ron asked.
"Nothing, Ron. I just think that… asking Fleur… it isn't such a good idea." Hermione said.
"Well I'm going to try anyway. No matter what any of you say. And I don't care if Fleur says no. At least I tried." Ron said.
"Been reading some of Hermione's romance books lately, Ron?" Harry joked.
Hermione and I laughed.
"Shut up!" Ron snapped.
"Hey don't make fun of those books! They're really good!" Hermione defended herself.
"Hermione, did you happen to leave one of your books in the Common Room one night? I found it that night Ron stormed off and I left dinner early. It was actually pretty good, from what I read, at least." I said.
"Hmm. Maybe. What was it called?" she asked.
"Um, something… Dawn? Frequent Dawn? Fleeting Dawn? No that's not it." I tried to remember. "It was about vampires… oh! Forever Dawn."
"Oh! I think that is mine! Thanks. Do you know where it is? Is it still in the Common Room?" she asked.
"No I kept it. I thought it was the school's book. Though Hogwarts doesn't supply books like that… Do you want it back?"
"If you want to read it, you can have it for now." she said.
"Thanks!" I said. Hermione and I were so engrossed in our own conversation, we didn't even realize that Ron and Harry had left. "I wonder they went?"
"That's strange. I didn't hear or see them leave." Hermione wondered out loud.
"Well I guess I'm going to leave now, too. I'm going the Dormitory."
"Oh are you going to bed early?" she asked.
"No. I got a letter from Uncle George today and I'm going to write him back. Do you want to come?"
"Um, I'm not really ready to go to bed… " she said, looking away.
"Oh you don't have to go to bed. I'm just saying… oh. You're meeting Krum aren't you?" I said.
"Yeah." she blushed.
Hermione and I departed. She went off towards the main courtyard and I headed to the grand staircase.
Once I got settled into my pajamas and into the bottom bunk of me and Hermione's bunk bed, I opened Uncle George's letter and read:
Yes, I miss having you around to do the household chores. It's much more tiring doing it the Muggle way. I liked it better when you did it in all of 2 minutes. I can't wait for you to be back home.
Dragons! How frightening! Harry's a smart boy, though. He'll get through this safely. Don't worry about him too much. You'll get worry lines. Trust me, all that worrying catches up to you. And good, I feel a bit better that you're keeping an eye on him. He'll be safe. Jealous of dragons? Why on earth would you be jealous of those creatures? They're just plain evil. I understand the flying in high altitudes part, but beautiful? And you really wish you were Harry? Facing death in a battle with a dragon? Are you sure you're okay over there?
Well, have fun at the Yule Ball. Make sure you tell me all about it! And you'll look beautiful, Chris. Send me some pictures! I love you and miss you.
Love, Uncle George
P.S. Go ahead! Ask old Dumbledore about our last name. I'm sure he'll know more than I could tell you.
So Uncle George doesn't understand the awe that I felt when I first saw those dragons. But who would? Usually when you think of dragons, you think of evil, hateful, and ugly creatures that terrorize towns and take innocent people as their victims. Not all dragons are like that now. In the old days when Merlin was around, dragons were hated and feared everywhere. All they did was watch villages from their nests or caves and then attack them when the villages were weakest. Which is at night. They swooped down and picked up the village's livestock or any person that happened to be standing outside. They brought the victims back to their nest or cave to feed themselves and their babies. I sometimes wonder if they live in big groups, like a family or a clan. But now, in the present, dragons don't do that. They've found a better way to live. They don't eat us and we don't kill them.
So why didn't we think of this compromise before? People then weren't really big on peace. Always making wars and rarely making peace treaties. But humanity has changed. Or I hope it soon will.
"Good morning, Hermione," I said to her after I woke up. No answer. "Hermione?" Still no answer.
I checked the top bunk of our bunk bed to she if she was there.
"Hermione?" I asked again. She was there, but she was sound asleep. That's odd. She's usually awake by now.
"Hello? Heeermioneee?" I tried again. "HERMIONE!" I yelled.
Nothing. No response. I poked her lightly with the tip of my finger.
She suddenly woke up with startle and jumped up. "What? What is it?"
Laughing, I said, "Nothing! I was just trying to wake you up!"
"Oh no! Did I sleep in?"
"Just a little - "
"Oh no!" she said again, scrambling down the bunk bed's ladder and rushing to get ready.
"How late did you stay up last night with Krum?" I asked Hermione.
She paused. "Oh, um. Not that late."
"I didn't think I'd ever see the day that Hermione Granger sleeps in late. I think you stayed up pretty late last night." I said.
"Okay, I did stay up late with Krum. But it's only because I was having too much fun to think straight," she said dreamily. Then coming back to reality, she snapped back into routine and started putting her outfit together and fixing her hair as she talked. "You would've stayed up late, too, if you were in my position."
"You're right. I would've," I said, and left her to her daily morning routine.
I went over to my bureau and took out my school uniform. I laid it out on my bed, pointed to it, and thought, Time to get ready for school. The clothes on my bed were replaced with my pajamas. Then I turned to my mirror and picked my hairstyle for today. After scrolling through all my options, I chose to go with plain, straight hair. Hmm, it looks a little drab. I pointed to my hair and thought, How about some highlights to brighten up my look? Suddenly my hair had highlights a shade lighter than my natural hair color. Better.
"Ready, Hermione?" I asked, turning to her.
"Ready!" she replied.
We both left the Girl's Dormitory and walked downstairs to the Common Room. Hermione gasped. We entered the Common Room and walked into a big group of people.
"How late are we?" Hermione asked.
"I think only a few minutes but by the look of this crowd it might be more," I replied.
"I'll ask someone," Hermione said. She tapped someone in front of us on the shoulder. He turned around and Hermione asked, "What's going on? Why is everyone here?"
The student didn't say anything but pointed to the middle of the crowd, the center of attention. I stood up on the tips of my toes to see… Ron! Ron is sitting in a chair with Harry behind him, trying to comfort Ron. Ron looks pale and shaky… like he just saw a ghost!
"Hermione look! It's Ron!" I said, pointing to him. Her eyes followed my finger and all the way to the middle of the crowd where Ron was. I grabbed her hand and pushed our way to Ron and Harry.
"Ron! What happened? You look like you just saw a ghost!" I asked. He didn't really answer me, he just mumbled something that I couldn't hear.
I looked at Harry for an answer. He said, "He just asked Fleur Delacour to the Yule Ball."
"What?" Hermione exclaimed.
"Well what did she say?" I asked Ron.
"She said no, right?" Hermione said.
Ron shook his head.
"She said yes?" Hermione and I exclaimed simultaneously.
"She couldn't have!" Harry said.
Then Ron came out of the traumatic state he was in and explained, "She was walking by and I, uh, I dunno… it just sort of slipped out."
A nearby girl said, "Actually he almost screamed at her. It was a little frightening."
"So what did you do?" Harry asked.
"What else could I do? I ran for my life. I can't do this, Harry." Ron said.
I grimaced. Oh, Ron. He can be so… pathetic at times. No offense to him. Harry sighed. I know he's thinking what I'm thinking.
Then the Patil twins walked by. "Hey, Harry," they both said.
"Hey," Harry answered back. Then he looked at me.
"What?" I asked.
"Do Parvati and Padma still need dates for the Ball?" he asked.
Harry smiled. "Great! I'll ask Parvati to the Ball and Ron can ask Padma. On second thought… I'll ask Padma for Ron."
"Good idea." I said.
"Chris, are you almost finished designing your Yule Ball dress?" Hermione asked as she examined herself in her dress in a full-length mirror. I was still sitting at a desk in the Girl's Dormitory, sketching out a design for my dress.
"I think I am, but there is still something not right about it." I replied.
"Oh, let me see." Hermione left her reflection at the full-length mirror and came over to me at my desk. She picked up my sketchbook to get a closer look and gasped. "Chris, what are you talking about? It's beautiful!"
I turned around to say, 'thank you, do you really think so?' when I saw Hermione's dress. I gasped. "Hermione… you look gorgeous in that dress!"
She was wearing this long, ruffled dress. It began at the light pink ruffled sleeves and got darker from the top to the bottom, where it ended in a dark purple.
"Thank you!" she blushed. "But really, that dress will look great, too."
Then she turned back to her full-length mirror and started working on her hair.
"Do you really think this dress is good?" I asked.
"Better than good!" Hermione answered.
"Okay then, I guess this is the one!" I exclaimed.
"Finally. That's the fifth dress design!" Hermione said.
I laughed in relief. I was beginning to think that I would never get it right. I pointed to the sketch of my dress and thought, My design becomes real.
Suddenly an exact copy of the sketch of my dress was laid out on my bed.
"Wow. It's exactly how I pictured it." I said.
"Try it on!" Hermione urged.
I undressed and slipped into the gown. Hermione gasped again. I stepped in front of the full-length mirror and smiled at my reflection. There I was, standing in my floor-length, black strapless dress with pretty embellishment at the top. It's totally my style. Simple but still elegant. Now for my hair. Put my hair in an elegant bun, I thought, as I pointed to my head. All of my hair was pulled back into a bun, except for my side bangs which covered the right side of my forehead and ended in a curl. On the left, a few strands of my hair hung in a curl.
"Perfect," I said.
Hermione fixed her hair into a bun and let some of her hair hang loose from the bun with sort of the same idea as mine. Then we both stood in front of the mirror admiring out reflections.
"Ready to go?" I asked her.
"Yes. I just have to get my shoes." Hermione answered as she put on her purple heels.
"Right. So do I," I said as I put on my silver heels.
As soon as Hermione and I entered the ballroom, everyone turned to look at us. We were greeted with wide eyes and gasps. Ron's eyes locked onto Hermione's, but then he turned away in disgust when Krum took Hermione's hand and led her into the ballroom.
"Oh my, they look beautiful," Parvati exclaimed, gesturing towards us.
Harry looked towards where she was pointing and his eyes widened. I could feel my cheeks getting hot. But the embarrassed feeling faded when everyone suddenly went back to whatever they were doing before. My thirty seconds of fame were over. Wait, I'm still famous. Famous for being the Girl Who Lived. Famous for being the most powerful witch or wizard of my age. Famous for being brave and fearless. Selfless but confident. Powerful, yet weak when someone's life is in danger. Do I want to be famous for all those things? Sure, these are all great qualities to have, but being famous has its negatives, too. I could definitely live without the famous part.
I must look so stupid, I realized. I'm still standing at the entrance like I'm lost. I walked towards Harry, Parvati, Ron, and Padma.
"Where did you get that dress? I want one just like it!" Parvati said.
"It's a Chris original," I said, twirling a bit to show it off.
"You made that?" she asked.
"With magic of course," I said, with a "duh" look on my face.
"So how do I look?" Harry jokingly asked.
"Very nice, Harry," I said.
"How about me?" Ron asked.
"Umm… you look… traditional." The sad thing is, the dress robes his Mom sent him can't get a better compliment than that.
"That's it? Traditional? And Harry gets a 'very nice'? Thanks," Ron said.
"I'm sorry it's just that those robes…," I couldn't finish the sentence without hurting Ron's feelings.
"I know. They're ghastly." Ron sighed.
I was just about to suggest helping him out with some magic, but then Professor McGonagall interrupted.
"Oh, Potter! There you are! Are you and Miss Patil ready?" she asked Harry.
"Ready for what, professor?" Harry asked.
"Why to dance of course! Didn't I tell you that all the champions are supposed to start dancing first?"
"Oh. Well now you know," McGonagall said, then disappeared to somewhere near the other professors.
"Has anyone seen Derrick?" I asked.
No one knew where he was, so I ventured out into the crowd to see if I could find him or someone else who would know where he was. It's not like he could be late or anything. Hermione and I were the last to show up.
"Chris! You look great," I heard someone say. I turned around to find Pete, one of Derrick's friends. Maybe he'll know where Derrick is.
"Do you know where Derrick is?" I asked him.
"Isn't Derrick with you?" he asked. I looked at him blankly. Pete and some of Derrick's other friends are immature and, well, there's no nicer way to say this but, stupid! But Pete is the most dense of them all. He's always too wrapped up in his own ego to pay attention to the real world. Derrick obviously isn't with me if I'm looking for him!
"No, Pete. I'm looking for him. He isn't with me." I said.
That's when I first saw Miss Blonde Blue-Eyed Girl standing next to Pete. Has she been there the whole time? I noticed she rolled her eyes at him. There's no possible way she could be his date.
"When we last saw him, he said he was going to the bathroom. He could be around there," Miss Blonde Blue-Eyed Girl suggested.
"Oh thanks… I'm sorry, I didn't catch your name?" I said.
"Felicity," she replied. Felicity. Better than Miss Blonde Blue-Eyed Girl.
"Well thanks, Felicity. See you around," I said.
"Later, Chris," Pete said.
I took Felicity's advice and headed towards the bathrooms. The bathrooms are located in a little hallway off the main one that leads to the ball room. I didn't see Derrick along the way or near the bathrooms.
He better find me fast, wherever he is.
Filch put the old record on the dusty record player and the slow, classical music started playing. Oh dear god, where is he? I wonder if I could call him here with magic?
Cedric and Cho danced out onto the middle of the floor. Cedric is such a good dancer… and he looks so handsome in those tuxedo robes! Okay, yeah, Cho is alright too.
Chris, focus. Derrick… can I conjure him here? I haven't really tried that yet.
I was lost in my own little magic world when someone grabbed me from behind. It took me a second to realize that they're hugging me with their arms around my waist. I relaxed when I heard Derrick's voice.
"Hello, gorgeous," he said. He spun me around and kissed me.
"Derrick! You don't know how glad I am to see you." I smiled. Then remembered how long I've been looking for him. "Where have you been?"
"With my friend Leo and his date. The whole time! Over there," he said, pointing towards the opposite side of the room.
"But Felicity said - "
"You met Felicity?" he interrupted.
"Um, yeah. She said you went to the bathroom and you'd be over there," I said, pointing towards the bathroom, opposite of where he pointed.
"Oh. I was in the bathroom. Before." he said.
"But you just said you were with Leo the whole time." I said, confused.
"Um, it doesn't really matter. I'm here now. Do you want to meet Leo?"
"No!" I exclaimed. "I want to dance. The champions are all out on the dance floor. Let's go."
I dragged him out onto the floor. He put the wrong hand on my waist and tried to grab my hand with his other one.
"Wrong hand!" I muttered. He switched hands and counted "One, two, three" to himself to catch the rhythm and beat of the song and soon he was leading me in a perfect dance. He's better than I thought!
I glanced over at Harry and Parvati. They both look like they don't want to be there. Maybe it was a mistake to set them up. But I don't understand? Parvati really liked him.
Hermione looks like she's having much more fun than Harry. I know she's been waiting for this since she heard about the Yule Ball.
When the song ended, I noticed Derrick seemed a little wary. He's been looking around the room for someone or something. He hasn't complimented my necklace. He gave this necklace to me. He said it was special because it was an antique and just because it's mine. I thought it was sweet at the time, but now I'm thinking he doesn't really care.
"Derrick," I said.
"Yeah?" he replied without looking at me.
"Look at me. Do you see this necklace?"
He looked at my face, then my necklace and said, "What about it?"
"What about it?" I repeated. "You gave this necklace to me last year. You said its special so I only wear it for special occasions. I think you'd notice if it was so special, wouldn't you?"
"Um, yeah - "
"You lied. Didn't you?"
"The necklace! Is it antique? Is it so special?"
"Yes! Of course! Why would I lie about that?
"I don't know, Derrick. You tell me."
"Um, I'm gonna go get some Pumpkin Juice." he said and ran off.
"What's with you guys?" I asked Harry and Ron.
After Derrick escaped, I found Harry and Ron sitting at a table with the Parvati girls, looking extremely bored.
"Just seeing Krum and Hermione makes me want to vomit," Ron answered.
"Why are you being so jealous?" I asked.
"Jealous? No way! I am NOT jealous!" Ron huffed.
"Well what about you Harry? You can't be jealous of them, too. Right?" I asked.
"No. It's Cho and Cedric that makes me want to vomit." Harry answered.
"Wow. Sounds like your nights are ruined. I think I'm in the same boat. I'm not having much fun." I said.
"Well, join the club," Ron said. Harry and Ron scooted over a little to make space for me to sit between them. We all sighed.
By now the music had changed from Filch's old record to a modern rock band old Dumbledore hired.
"Are you going to ask me to dance?" Padma asked. Harry, Ron and I turned and looked at her blankly. Hmm. We forgot she was there.
"No," Ron answered miserably.
Padma left and found someone else to dance with.
"Oh, look. Parvati's gone, too." Harry announced.
"Good. I thought they'd never leave." Ron joked. We all laughed. The only thing missing was Hermione to laugh with us. Then it would be like our first year here. Happy and care-free.
Yeah, right. Like that will happen.
"I'm sorry, guys. I thought you and the Patil sisters would get along," I apologized.
"It's alright. I thought we would, too." Harry said.
"Me too, mate. I was wrong," Ron agreed.
"Yeah, no kidding," I said.
"A bit hot in here, isn't it?" Hermione said, joining us. "Viktor's getting drinks. Care to join us?"
"Oh, look who's finally cared to join us," said Ron. "No we wouldn't care to join you and Viktor."
"Ron - " I started.
"No! She needs to know," Ron interrupted.
"Know what?" Hermione asked, already getting irritated.
"He's using you, Hermione." Ron said.
Where in the world is he getting this from?
"What are you talking about!" Hermione exclaimed.
"Yeah, Ron. What ARE you talking about?" Harry said.
"It's obvious! He's a Durmstrang. Why would he be fraternizing with the enemy?"
"The enemy? A few weeks ago, you would have killed for his autograph. Now I'm fraternizing with the enemy! Besides, the whole point of this stupid tournament is to make friends!" Hermione rebutted.
"Ha! Friendship! I think he's got a lot more on his mind than that!" Ron said.
Hermione gasped. "Chris, or Harry, if you'd like to join us, we'll be over by the refreshment table."
She glared at Ron one last time and dramatically turned and stomped away.
"Hermione!" I called. "Wait!"
"Oh, are you coming to join us?" Hermione asked.
I shook my head. "No. Actually I was wondering if you saw Derrick when you left Krum at the drinks table?"
"Hmm. Sorry, can't say I did. Oh, and if you go back there, tell Ron he's a - "
"Hermione, please. Don't bring me into this."
"Okay. See you later then."
I returned to Harry and Ron and asked them what they thought of Derrick disappearing like this and acting so weird.
"The man said he was going to get drinks, so he's getting drinks!" Ron said.
"But that was 10 minutes ago!" I exclaimed. "It doesn't take that long to pour two drinks!"
"In his defense, he's a popular guy. He's probably stopping to chat with people along the way." Ron said.
I stopped for a second to consider this idea. It's possible he did stop to talk to Pete, Leo… or Felicity. It seems like Derrick and Felicity are friends. I think that's safe to assume by the way he interrupted me when I said I'd met her. Now that I think about it, why did he do that? Was I not supposed to meet her? Hmm.
"Hey, guys, do you know anything about a Felicity? Blonde hair, blue eyes… I think she's a fourth-year?" I asked.
"You mean Felicity Chapman? I saw her with Pete earlier," Harry said.
"Felicity Chapman. Is Pete her boyfriend?" I asked.
Ron laughed. "Pete wishes! If there was a guy that lucky… "
"So she's single?" I asked.
"Oh, yeah. But she says she isn't interested in anyone." Ron said.
"Why are you suddenly asking so much about her, anyway?" Harry asked.
"It's silly. Forget I even asked about her." I said.
I'm not sure why I'm obsessing over this, but I don't have a good feeling about Felicity. Why hasn't Derrick ever talked about her? Why haven't I seen them together before?
I hadn't realized it until now, but I've been subconsciously playing with my necklace while we were talking about Felicity. Stupid necklace. It probably doesn't even have any kind of value to it. Stupid Derrick. I should've known! This necklace looks really cheap. Why didn't I see that before! Stupid me!
Then I heard a snap. My necklace! I broke it! Huh, it really IS cheap. I cradled the necklace in my hand. Even though it's cheap, it's still pretty. I could fix it with magic, but since it has no value anymore, I might as well just throw it away.
"I have to go find Derrick." I mumbled.
"What was that?" Ron asked.
"I'm going to look for Derrick." I said louder. I'm not going to just sit here and wait for him. Plus I want to ask him about Felicity. And give him back this stupid necklace.
First, I started at the drinks table. That's where he said he'd be. Hey, why not get a drink while I'm here? So I did just that. I poured myself a cup of pumpkin juice. I feel so pathetic, just standing here, relaxing and drinking pumpkin juice, while I should be looking for my boyfriend. If this night was going normally, I'd be with Derrick right now, probably dancing or talking to Krum and Hermione (Derrick loves Krum). But, really, after tonight I'm not sure Derrick and I will be the same.
"Hey, Chris!" someone called out. I looked up to see Pete coming this way.
"Oh, hey, Pete." I said unenthusiastically. Great, just what I need. Pete to distract me.
"You ok?" he asked.
"Fine. You?" I asked back. Here in England, "You ok?" is a common greeting like "What's up?".
"Great!" he said.
"So… where's your date?" I asked. I noticed Felicity wasn't with him.
"My what? Oh! Felicity! Umm… " he looked around. "I, uh… don't really know. Probably in the bathroom."
"Why'd you ask anyway?"
"No reason. It's just that we both have missing dates." I said.
"Do you know where Felicity is?" I asked him.
He paused. "No."
Why did that require any thought?
"Well, I don't know where Derrick is, either. So we both have missing dates, right?" I said.
"Yeah. What are you trying to say?" he asked.
Actually, I'm not sure what I'm trying to say. I'm just trying to get something out of him. If he knows anything that I don't.
"I don't know. Do you think they might be, by any chance, together?" I've had my suspicions about that girl since I met her about an hour ago, and with the weird way Derrick's been acting, I've come up with a theory. My theory is Felicity likes Derrick. Like WAY more than she should. And I think she's been trying to make him like her back. That might be why Derrick's been acting weird. He didn't want me to worry about her so he didn't tell me. Makes sense, right?
"Why would they be together?" Pete asked, surprised.
"I dunno. Do you think Felicity might like Derrick?" I asked.
"What? Where is this coming from?" Pete asked.
"It's just a thought." I shrugged it off, trying to act normal.
"Hmm. Do you really think so? Felicity has been acting strange around him. Tell you what. I want to find out what's going on as much as you. So I'll help you find him."
This took me by surprise. "You will?"
"Yeah, definitely." he smiled. Huh. I guess Pete's not a bad guy after all.
And so the search mission began.
Pete ran off to ask Leo if he'd seen Derrick or Felicity, and if that didn't work he'd ask other friends of the both of them. I headed off towards the bathrooms. I'll peek inside the girls' bathroom quick, then knock on the boys' bathroom door and ask if Derrick is in there. NO WAY am I going inside! Like I mentioned before, the bathrooms are in a short hallway branching off from the longer main hallway that leads to the ball room. So I exited the ball room and walked down the main hallway, checking every nook and cranny along the way.
"Chris! Where are you going?" Harry asked. I stopped and turned to see him coming my way.
"Looking for Derrick and Felicity." I said.
Any other person would just take that normally and forget it quickly, but since Harry knows me so well, he sensed something was wrong and asked, "Is everything okay? Do you need some help?"
"Thanks, Harry. But I already have help." I said, avoiding his first question.
"Who's helping you?" he asked.
"Pete." I said.
"Pete? Why him?" Harry raised his eyebrows.
"He wants to know where they are just as much as I do. And he's not really a bad guy." I said, sticking up for Pete.
"Oh. Hey, you didn't answer my first question."
"Let me explain." I said while pulling him over to a bench.
"I have this theory."
"So Derrick has been acting really weird lately. Like when I told him that I met Felicity, he was surprised and it seemed like he didn't want me to meet her. And just before, I was talking to Pete, and he said he couldn't find Felicity. Both of our dates are missing. Plus, Pete says Felicity's been acting weird around him, too. So my theory is that Felicity likes Derrick. She's probably been flirting with him and trying to make him like her. And Derrick doesn't want me to worry. That's why he hasn't talked about her or introduced me to her or anything." I said.
"That does make sense." Harry commented.
"Yeah. And that's why Derrick has been acting distracted by something all night." I said.
"So what are you doing over here? Checking the bathrooms?" he asked.
"Exactly. Can you check inside the boys' bathroom for me?" I asked.
"Sure. Be back in a minute." he said and went inside the boys' bathroom.
Meanwhile, I walked into the girls' bathroom and called out, "Felicity? You in here?"
No answer. I pushed open every stall door and didn't find her anywhere. I sighed. Where can she be now?
I met Harry outside the bathrooms again. By the look on his face I could tell Derrick wasn't in there.
"Now what am I gonna do?" I wondered out loud. I sat back down on the bench and put my head in my hands. Harry sat back down next to me and took my hands away from my face.
"Look at me." he said. So I did and he said, "Go back in the ball room and relax and have some fun. Try to salvage what's left of tonight. I'll help Pete look for them."
"You'll do that for me?" I asked.
"Of course." he smiled. But I could tell it was a fake smile. He knows tonight is gonna end badly. I know it, too.
"Okay. I'll try." I said.
He seemed to be satisfied with that and went back into the ball room. Maybe he's right. I should go back into the ball room and just forget it for a while and have fun. So I started off towards the entrance to the ball room - when I heard something. A voice. Coming from the other dead-end hallway branching off of the main one.
It was saying, "I really think I should go back now."
I stopped dead in my tracks. That voice belongs to Derrick. I inched forward a little bit and contemplated whether or not I should go over there and confront him or listen to find out who he's talking to. Maybe I should just go get Harry or Pete.
"No! Please stay!" a girl's voice said.
It's Felicity! I knew it! She HAS been flirting with him! What do I do now? Then I remembered the necklace I broke that's still in my hand. And just then, I realized, I have to get Derrick back.
So I marched right out into the opening of the hallway to get rid of that girl. I opened my mouth to say something, but closed it right away. My heart stopped. I'm completely speechless.
Why am I acting like this you ask? Because that girl has her arms wrapped around my boyfriend's neck, and he's gently touching her waist while looking deeply into her eyes. Where have I seen this before? Oh, yeah! He's done this a MILLION times with ME! Don't do it, Derrick. Don't lean in for the -
He's really doing it. He's leaning in for the kiss. And she's on her tip toes to meet his lips. No! No, no, no! This isn't happening. I can't watch this. I gotta leave.
I threw the necklace Derrick gave me towards them. Fortunately, it landed right at his feet. Which got his attention.
"Oh no." I heard him say.
With that, I took off.
I'm not really sure where I'm going, but my feet are taking me somewhere. Anywhere away from the ball room or Derrick… or just away from anyone is fine with me. I don't know if anyone is following me, but I don't want to know either. Finally, after running up so many flights of stairs, my feet stopped at Myrtle's bathroom. Gasping for air, I burst into the bathroom and went straight to a corner to sit down.
"Chriiis!" Myrtle moaned from her stall. "Is that you?"
"Yes, Myrtle, it's me." I said between breaths.
Myrtle glided through the air towards me. "What are you doing up here? The ball is down stairs. You ok?"
And I'm not sure why it happened at that exact moment, but I burst into tears. I cried and cried and cried some more. Myrtle was nice enough to let me keep going until I ran out of tears. When the sobs started to stop, Myrtle said, "I remember my Yule Ball." she smiled at the thought. "It was terrible."
I chuckled a little at that.
"I didn't have a gorgeous dress. My hair and makeup weren't perfect. And I didn't have my handsome prince to escort me. But now that I think about it, I had fun. Because I didn't let those small things ruin it for me. I still had my friends. Well, friend. She was there for me because she was just like me. So-so dress, not-so perfect hair, and no prince. We danced the night away!"
I smiled through my tears.
"But, Chris, you have all those things. So why are you blubbering?" Myrtle asked.
"I don't have the prince anymore, Myrtle. Not after tonight. I caught my 'prince' cheating on me!" I told her.
"That lying little piece of - never mind. Forget him! You have everything else! The beautiful dress, perfect hair and makeup, and… who knows, maybe you DO have a prince. He's just not someone you'd expect." Myrtle said.
"Who, then?" I asked.
"Well I don't know. You'll find out soon enough. I know it." she said. "So what exactly happened?"
So I told her exactly what happened and then cried some more after I finished.
"Oh man. So how long do you think he's been cheating on you?" Myrtle asked.
I sniffed and replied, "I have no idea. Probably longer than just tonight. But do you know what the worst part of all of this is?"
"I loved him. I fell so in love with him, thinking that he loved me just as much. Now I'm asking myself, did he ever really love me? Have I been so stupid?"
"You're not stupid. You're just a victim of a stupid boy." Myrtle said.
"I guess." I said. I sighed and walked to the sink. Oh God, I'm such a mess! My hair is frizzy and wild from all the running I did, my mascara is running down my face from all the crying I did and my eyes are red and puffy. Great. But I don't really feel like dealing with this right now.
"I think I'm gonna go now, Myrtle." I said.
"Don't you want to clean up a bit first?" she asked.
"No. I'm just suddenly really tired. So I'm just gonna Apparate back to the girls' dorm and go to bed so no one sees me." I said.
"Okay. Sweet dreams, Chris."
"Thanks, Myrtle. Maybe I will, if I get to sleep." I said.
Take me to the girls' dorm, I thought, and Apparated out of there.
I changed into my pajamas quick and climbed into bed. There's no point in washing my face, I'm just going to start crying again.
What am I gonna do? The whole school will know what happened by tomorrow! Everyone will stare at me and whisper to their friends and I'll just start crying in front of everyone! And I CAN'T let people see me cry. I just can't. The only people who have seen me cry is Uncle George, Harry, and Myrtle. And that's embarrassing enough. I need to talk to someone besides Myrtle. This is just too much to hold in. But I can't go out there! I'll just write back to Uncle George.
Dear Uncle George,
I wish you were here more than ever! It's the night of the Yule Ball. Guess where I am? CRYING MY EYES OUT IN THE GIRLS' DORM! You won't believe what happened tonight. I don't even believe it.
So I was having fun in the beginning. I got ready and got to the ballroom with Hermione. We talked with friends for a little bit. But, I realized, WHERE IS DERRICK? So I asked around. Nobody knew where he was! I talked to his friend, Pete, who was with this girl I've never seen before. Her name is Felicity. She was nice. At first. I thought nothing of this girl, except that she was really nice… until later.
Derrick finally found me in time for the traditional dance. It was great! But after we danced, I noticed Derrick seemed a little… spacey and not paying attention at all. I was wearing that necklace he gave me last year. I thought he'd comment on it, but he didn't even know I had it on when I asked him about it! He completely forgot that he gave to me and told me it was "special". Well, now I'm totally convinced that it's NOT special at all. He lied! Then Derrick made the excuse that he was going to go get us something to drink. So I sat down with Harry and Ron and talked with them. And talked and talked. Then Hermione came, who said that her date was getting drinks. But she hadn't seen Derrick there. That was suspicious enough.
I found Pete again, who told me that his date, Felicity, was missing, too. He had his suspicions about her. So we went on a little search party. Oh, I broke the cheap necklace Derrick gave me, by the way. Anyway, I found Derrick and Pete's date. Together. In a little dead-end hallway. You can guess what they were doing. I threw the broken necklace at his feet and ran out of there. Myrtle was there for me, though. I waited until I stopped crying, then Apparated to the dorm. And here I am…
That's the story. I just wanted to get my feelings out. I don't think Serena will get this letter to you fast enough. I'll charm it. It will Apparate to you, and when you're finished writing back, please just say my name and it will make its way to me. Don't worry, you're not doing any magic. You're just… helping me with magic. Sort of. But anyway, I feel a little better now. Please write back to me as soon as you can!
I know just seeing Uncle George's handwriting will make me feel more at home. And that's the only place I'd rather be right now. Home… I miss it so much. If I was at home, I wouldn't have caught Derrick… cheating. On me. It's still too weird to even think about that word. But maybe catching him in the act is better than never knowing. That's something Uncle George would say.
Knock. Knock. Knock. Oh no! Why does someone want to come in here so early? The ball shouldn't be over yet!
"Umm… please don't come in!" I pleaded.
"Er… I can't. You locked it. Besides, I can't come in anyway. I'm not supposed to be up here." a nervous voice said. It's Pete!
"Pete? What are you doing up here?" I tried to sound as normal as possible.
"I found Felicity. She told me what happened." he said.
I sat up in bed. "Felicity did? Where was Derrick?" I asked.
"He was there. He was too busy cradling that necklace like it was precious and saying, 'She broke it! She broke the necklace!' to explain it to me himself." Pete imitated Derrick's voice so funny, I couldn't help but giggle a little. But the giggle broke into a sob.
"Chris? I'm sorry. Should I talk about this later?" Pete said.
"No, no. I'm fine." I sniffled. "It's just that it sounds like he cared about the stupid necklace more than me!" I sobbed again. I hate Derrick for making me cry!
"Yeah. He's a jerk. I know that now. I'm not speaking to either of them ever again! Does that make you feel any better?" Pete asked.
"Sort of." I lied. It didn't really help at all. "Thanks, Pete. Um, I think you should go now. You know, you could get caught up here." I said. Which was an excuse to get him to leave.
"Right. Well… have a nice night. Never mind. I think all chances of that happening are slim now. Sorry. Good night." Pete said awkwardly.
"Night." I mumbled, then broke into another sob.
And then I cried myself to sleep.
"Someone should wake her up." Someone said.
"No! Let her sleep!" Someone else said.
"It's already past breakfast!" Person 1 said.
"I feel bad. Just let her sleep. She'll wake up when she's ready." a third person said.
"Yeah. How would you like it if you caught your boyfriend of 3 years cheating on you?" Person 2 said.
"Shhh! Stop bickering! You'll wake her up!" Person 3 said.
I groaned. "Too late." I mumbled. I turned towards the speakers and opened my eyes. Person 1 is Parvati, Person 2 is Ginny, and Person 3 is Hermione.
"Chris! I'm sorry! I tried to stop them!" Hermione said.
"It's okay. What time is it?" I asked.
"11:30." Parvati said.
"In the morning? Oh no! I missed breakfast!" I exclaimed.
"It's okay. We brought you food from the kitchen. The house elves are very understanding." Ginny said.
"So I guess you all know what happened." I said.
Hermione nodded. "Derrick is such a jerk!"
"Agreed!" Parvati said.
"Ditto." Ginny said.
"Don't worry. We'll find a way to get back at that foul beast!" Hermione exclaimed.
"But before you go anywhere, Chris, I think you should… clean yourself up." Parvati suggested.
"Oh right." I said. I pointed to my face and thought, I need to look like last night didn't faze me. "Better?" I asked.
"Perfect!" Ginny said.
"Wait, it's Saturday, isn't it?" I asked. They nodded. "Then I don't have to leave the dorm."
"At least eat the breakfast we brought you." Hermione said.
"Okay." Then I spotted an envelope on my dresser. It's Uncle George, writing me back! "You guys, don't worry about me. Go do what you want. I'm just going to stop you guys from having fun anyway." I said.
They understood that I needed to be alone and left. Meanwhile, I opened the letter from Uncle George.
I'm so, so sorry to hear that. It breaks my heart knowing that such a strong girl like you is sitting in her bed alone, crying. I want you to know that you are a very strong girl and nothing or no one can change that. But, you know what? You're a lucky girl, despite all that. You have great friends who will be there for you when times get rough. Like Myrtle. Go talk to a living friend though… they will make you feel like you're not alone. If your parents were alive, I would tell you to go talk to your mother. Because I can't be of much help. I think this is something a mother-daughter chat would be good for. I'm so sorry you can't have those anymore. Keep in mind that they loved you, I love you, and you're friends love you. Even when you're down, they can be of good help. So that's my advice for you. Oh, and sorry that this arrived so late at night. You're letter landed on my face while I was asleep and woke me up!
I've enclosed a picture of your mother to remind you how strong and independent you are. Never forget it, Chris. And now you won't be able to forget it. Every time you're feeling blue, just look at this picture. You remind me so much of her. You know that? It's painful for me to even think of you being in pain. Emotional as well as physical. I love you! This is only one bump in the road! You've faced worse challenges.
Love, Uncle George
I took out the picture of my mother that Uncle George sent me. Wow, she is so beautiful! I guess I can sort of understand why everyone says I am so beautiful. Actually, I still don't get it. What do they see in me that I don't? I see all the imperfections, and they seem to believe I'm so brave, so powerful, and so beautiful. I understand the powerful part, but the brave part I'm not too sure of. Sure, it may look like I'm such a brave heroine, but I'm really not! Just look at me! Crying my eyes out over this… it's not brave or powerful at all! You would think someone as brave and powerful people make me out to be would get back at Derrick for this. Something with magic, that he'll never forget. Something that would scare him out of cheating on another girl. But I'm obviously not doing that. I'm doing the exact opposite.
Remember when I mentioned my imaginary "hard shell" that I've gotten over the years? Well, I think it's broken. It's completely broken. What if I'm never going to be the same? What if my shell really IS broken? Uncle George doesn't seem to think so. But he doesn't see me now. I looked at the picture again. Am I really as brave as my mother was? Maybe she was just like me, putting on a brave act for everyone, but she was really crumbling away inside. That's how I feel now. I'll put on a brave act, but I really am broken inside. No one will know it. They'll all think I'm so brave, like always. And I'll be crying myself to sleep every night. Is this how the rest of my life will be?
No, it won't. I have to stop thinking like this! What can I do to get my mind off of it? I looked around on my dresser for inspiration. Try out new hair styles? Nah. Write back to Uncle George? Maybe later. Paint my nails? Hmm… maybe. My nails do need a fresh coat. Then I saw a picture of Derrick and I. It's a magic picture, so it doesn't stop moving. He smiles and looks at me, I smile and look at him, and then he kisses my forehead affectionately. I hit it so it dropped face down on the dresser and sighed. Then a light bulb went on in my head.
I know what I'm going to do today! I'm going to find all the things that remind me of Derrick, and I'm going to get rid of them. Throw them out, burn them, whatever it takes to forget him. But I'm not sure if I'm ready to let people see me. I look fine, but people won't stop asking me what happened or telling me that they're just so sorry or Derrick's a complete jerk. I know he's a jerk. I get it, you feel bad for me. And I don't feel like explaining the whole thing. That's how I would respond. Or just break down and start crying again. That's also a possibility.
So where can I go that is really private? That I can just Apparate to?
"Chris?" Hermione knocked on the door.
"Yeah?" I called out.
"You ready to come out yet?" she paused. "We miss you, Chris. Harry and Ron want to make sure you're okay. Even Pete wants to see you, too. Come on, please?"
I hesitated. I feel bad keeping everyone waiting. Or more like wondering. But I just don't think I'm ready yet. They'll just have to wait and wonder some more. "Um, I'm sorry, Hermione. I'm not completely ready yet. I'm gonna go for a walk. Down by the bank of the lake, maybe."
"I'll come with you. Maybe Harry and Ron will, too." she said.
"Sorry," I apologized again. "I want to be alone."
"Okay, I understand." Hermione said. She cleared her throat. "But if you change your mind, we'll be in the common room."
I didn't reply. I hope she doesn't take it the wrong way. I'm just trying to get her to understand that I want to be alone. And that's it. No ifs or buts. Hermione stood there for a minute, and then walked away.
I gathered everything I could find that reminded me of Derrick in some way. I took the picture of him kissing me on the forehead out of the frame, I grabbed some earrings he bought me for my birthday once, a few letters he wrote me, a couple more pictures, and a bottle of perfume he bought me. I stuffed them all into a bag and looked for more things that made me think of him. I found movie ticket stubs that I had kept from movies I went to see with him, some paper where I wrote his name over and over again from when I first had a crush on him, and a t-shirt that had the number of his favorite Quidditch player. I stuffed those into the bag along with everything that he had ever given me, and got ready to Apparate. I stood in the middle of the room and thought of the Black Lake.
I arrived at a nice little dock on the bank of the lake. Private and secluded. Perfect. I walked to the end of the dock and plopped down, leaning against a pole. I dumped out the contents of the bag and separated them into two groups. The first group was paper. Things that I'm going to burn. The second group was just other things I could find another way to get rid of.
First, I picked up the pictures of Derrick and I. I looked so happy in these. Too bad Derrick had to go and ruin it. Burn the pictures, I thought. And they burned away until they were ashes, right there in my hand. I spread out my fingers wide so the ashes fell out of my hand. They landed on the dock, but the wind blew them away into the water. This would make a good dramatic movie moment. Too bad this is real. I did the same thing I just did with the letters, the movie ticket stubs, and the paper that has his name all over it. I watched them all turn to ashes, feeling a little better than last night with each one. Then I grabbed the perfume. I dumped out the perfume (which I never used, I hated the smell) on the ground and chucked the bottle into the lake. I watched it fly through the air and land in the water with a plop with satisfaction. I never liked that thing. It was tucked away in the sock draw of my dresser. But I kept in case he ever asked about it. But he never did… shows how much he cared.
Next, I took the t-shirt. I never really liked this one either. Derrick only wanted me to wear it so I could show off how dedicated I was to him. That I would even wear his favorite player's number. Ugh. It makes me sick. I burned that, too.
Then, I took the last thing I had brought: the earrings. This is the best gift I have ever gotten from him. They're just plain little diamond studs, but I love them. I mean, LOVED. Past tense. But how will I forget these when they were the only gift I really liked? They'll still be there in the back of my head. And one day, I'll remember them, which will make me think of Derrick.
Could I erase my own memory?
I threw the earrings into the water like I threw the perfume bottle. But this time I was sad watching them disappear until all I could see of them was the little waves they made when they hit the water. I should erase my memory now before I use Accio to get the earrings back. Erase all memory I have of those earrings, I thought. I blanked out for a few seconds, and then came back to reality when I realized that I can't remember anything that happened in the past few minutes.
What did I get rid of last? Oh! The shirt! There must have been something else I got rid of. I know I had more. I had to have erased my memory. There's no other explanation! But I still remember Derrick and everything that has happened. So what did I not want myself to remember? Well, whatever it was, it's gone now, and I'm probably better off.
Okay, I gotta relax. I took a nice deep breath, and let it out slowly, while I cleared my mind of anything Derrick-related. I kicked off my shoes and let my feet dangle off of the dock with my toes in the water.
I can do this. I just need to think of something else. Hmm… well, yesterday Dumbledore told me where the next challenge of the tournament would take place. Here, actually. At this lake. I wonder what the challenge is? Dumbledore isn't supposed to say what it is. The champions have to use the golden egg they got from the last challenge to figure it out. Unfortunately, Harry still hasn't figured out that golden egg yet, and the day of the challenge is Wednesday. If I could tell Harry that the challenge takes place here, it would help him out at least a little bit, but it's against rules and I promised Dumbledore I wouldn't. Harry needs the help. I think it's good that Harry has a friend in the tournament. Cedric would probably help him out.
Oh, Harry. Who could have put his name in the goblet? Who would do that to him? Harry's done all right so far, but he just isn't cut out for this. I've got to help him as much as I can without cheating. How could I not help him? He's… my best friend. I haven't really thought of him like that until recently. But he really understands me.
What was it that Myrtle said? "I think you're starting to get really close to Harry," I remembered. "Crying over him like he's your boyfriend."
"You're slowly drifting away from Derrick and towards Harry," she had said.
Is that what's happening? I don't really know how I feel about Harry. I do know that he understands me and we're a lot alike. And he's pretty much my best friend. But could I ever feel that way about him? He's been the greatest friend anyone could have. And I do love him… in a way. But in that way? What if our relationship gets ruined if we get into fights or we break up or something? I don't want to lose him. I can't.
Then someone tapped me on the shoulder. It was such a shock, taking me back from whatever world inside my head I was in, that I screamed.
"Whoa, calm down!" Derrick exclaimed.
All the memories of last night came flooding back.
"Look, I came to - "
"Apologize?" I interrupted. "You've got to be kidding me!" I chuckled a little.
Derrick looked surprised and a little angry. Probably because this isn't what he wanted to happen. He thought I would accept his apology and take him back in a heart beat.
My eyes narrowed. "Save your breath, Derrick. Don't apologize." I stood up and put my shoes back on.
"Come on, please. Just listen to what I have to say." he said.
I crossed my arms and nodded.
"Please. Forgive me! I know I've been a jerk."
I snorted. "That's it?" I asked.
"Well… yeah. Will you take me back?"
"Just answer me one question. How long have you been cheating on me?" I asked.
He paused. "Not the whole time."
"That still doesn't answer my question!" I exclaimed.
"Okay! It's been… uh… six months." he finally said.
"Six! Six months, Derrick!" I yelled.
"You're SORRY! How could you, Derrick? How could you do this to me? I thought you loved me! You said you did! And I loved you! Oh, God. All this time!" I started ranting.
Then I calmed down for a second to ask something else. "Why?" I asked.
"I did love you. Honestly! It was great! But I just… I dunno. I saw Felicity. And I was seeing less and less of you," he tried to explain.
"What? I saw you a lot, Derrick! Just about every day!" I said.
"I didn't mean that! I mean, after I saw Felicity, I didn't really see you the same anymore. All I thought about was Felicity," he said, in a dreamy state.
"Why didn't you break up with me then?" I asked, bewildered.
"Because… I liked the popularity." he said.
My mouth dropped open. "So you were using me?"
"Oh, my God. I can't believe this! I can't believe YOU! The popularity? How selfish could one person be? I hate you, Derrick. HATE YOU!" I yelled and started to stomp away.
"Chris!" Derrick called out.
"NO! Do not talk to me! Ever again!" I yelled.
And that is when I promised myself that I would never forget what happened. I'll always be more careful with who I trusted.
There just isn't more tears I could shed anymore. It's just hate. Pure hatred and it's all I have left for Derrick. What more could I possibly do or say? I've cried, I've vented my feelings, and I've faced the person who broke my heart…
And now I feel like the only people I could ever trust now is Harry, Ron, Hermione - my three very best friends - and Uncle George, the only family I've got left. Oh, and then there's Professor Dumbledore. Anyone else I've just completely lost faith in.
After I told him not to talk to me, Derrick quietly walked back towards Hogwarts, and out of my sight. I stood there for a moment, taking it all in. It's really over. He really used me. He used me. How could I be so blind! To think that he actually cared about me and my feelings. How stupid. And then he goes behind my back for six months. God, what was he thinking? Did he think I wouldn't find out? Well, he better regret that now.
What do I do now? Walk back to Hogwarts?
No, I can't do that. I'd probably bump into Derrick along the way. Now I see how vain he is. Right now, he probably stopped to look at his reflection in a puddle or conjure up a mirror to stare at himself. Him and his precious popularity. He'd do anything to be as famous as me or Harry, wouldn't he? He's an idiot. There are much more important things in life than popularity. Like having parents… at least he's got them.
Anyway, I need somewhere to go… someone else to talk to. Spotting Hagrid's hut in the distance, I finally decided to go there.
Knock, knock, knock. "Hagrid?" I said, knocking on his door.
The door opened a bit, and then swung open wider when Hagrid saw that it was me at his door.
"Chris!" Hagrid exclaimed and then picked me up and brought me into a Hagrid-hug.
"Oof! Ow! Hagrid put me down, please!" I said.
"Sorry. There," he put me down. "Now what brings you here?"
"I just," I paused for a second and thought. Why am I here? Then finished, "need somewhere to go, I guess."
He frowned. "What's the problem?"
"You mean you haven't heard?" I asked.
His eyebrows furrowed. "Well why don't you come on in here and tell me?"
He stepped back, giving me room to step in and he closed the door behind me.
"Now tell me what you're doing out here," Hagrid said, pulling out a chair for me to sit down.
But I didn't. Because I was surprised to see that Hagrid had another guest sitting at the table, smiling up at me.
"Sit down," Harry said, gesturing at the chair Hagrid pulled out.
"W-what are you doing here?" I asked Harry. I swear, it's like me and Harry have some kind of psychic connection! He knew I'd be here. And somehow, I don't really feel that surprised anymore.
"I originally came to tell Hagrid what happened last night. But, do you want to tell him instead?" Harry offered.
"It don't matter to me, I'd just like to know what you two are going on about!" Hagrid said.
"Um, you can tell him, Harry." I said.
He nodded. "Well you'll have to fill in the details. I only know what happened when I was there."
So Harry began the story, and I interrupted occasionally to add something that Harry didn't know yet. A few times, I saw Hagrid look over at me to make sure I was okay. I smiled back to reassure him I was each time. When Harry was talking, I just sat there quietly and let him say the more painful parts. At the end, I told them what happened after the ball and what I did this morning. Including talking to Derrick, which is how I ended up here.
"I could crush him for you. If you'd like," Hagrid joked.
"And have you sent to Azkaban for it? No way," I said.
Then we became serious again. "So how do you feel?" Hagrid asked.
"Angry." I replied.
"That's the strong Chris I know," Hagrid chuckled.
Yeah, strong façade Chris puts on that you know, I thought. But I smiled back at him anyway.
"Oh! Look at the time! Come on, let's go back to Hogwarts for dinner." Hagrid said.
So we followed Hagrid to Hogwarts. Hagrid told us all about Madame Maxime and how she and him had been talking recently, and Hagrid is beginning to really like her.
"Now that I think about it, I did see you two dancing at the ball together," Harry said, talking about Hagrid and Madame Maxime.
"Ah, yes. That was fun and I think she enjoyed it, too." Hagrid grinned as he reminisced.
"I'm glad someone had a nice time," I replied. I didn't mean to seem so depressed, but I noticed Hagrid slowed down so Harry and I could catch up with him, and then he kept glancing at me like he did in his hut. I also noticed Harry started walking closer to me, almost protectively. Almost shoulder-to-shoulder.
"I've got some important news," Harry said at dinner.
"Go on," Hermione urged.
"First, I had another dream. I was back in that old house, coming up the staircase. When I reached the door, Voldemort said 'The time is close now' when someone showed him the skull on their arm. And then he realized I was there and said 'Step aside, Wormtail, so I can give our guest a proper greeting'. And then I woke up." Harry explained.
"The time is close now? What does that mean?" Hermione asked.
"No idea," Harry answered.
"Who showed their arm to Voldemort, is what I'm wondering," I said.
"Yeah. I didn't see their face. Just the arm," Harry said.
"Strange," Ron commented.
"But why would Voldemort be showing you this? There's got to be some other purpose," I asked.
"Maybe he's just trying to scare you," Ron suggested.
"Maybe. But I think he's basically telling you something is going to happen," Hermione shared.
"Yeah, but not what is going to happen," Harry said.
"I think he's showing you a little at a time," I thought out loud.
Three puzzled faces turned to look at me. "What do you mean?" Hermione asked.
"Well, remember just before school started, Harry? You had a dream like this one," I said.
"Yeah. But this time I'm me in the dream. In the first dream, I was the caretaker. And Voldemort was saying that 'it can't happen without the boy'." Harry answered.
"Exactly. He's giving you clues, Harry," I said.
"Clues? Like what kind of clues?" Ron asked.
"Like that there is a boy involved… probably meaning Harry. And that the 'time is close now'. So what ever it is, it's definitely coming. And we need to be ready," I said.
"Yeah, it makes sense. And you're right. We do need to be ready," Harry said.
"Should we warn Dumbledore?" Hermione asked.
"I will. What ever happens, he'll help us with it," Harry answered.
"Alright, so, no one do anything rash before talking to the rest of us about it. Okay?" I asked.
Everyone nodded. "Harry. You especially. Whatever you plan, at least tell us, okay?" I said.
"Okay," Harry said.
"Promise," I ordered.
"I promise I won't do anything without all of us making a decision on it," Harry said.
"Good. I know that's the kind of thing you'll do, Harry. Don't be a hero, alright? What ever you have up your sleeve, I'm with you. Don't do anything without me. This is my fight as much as it is yours. I deserve to -"
"Okay I got it!" Harry interrupted.
I sighed. "Just making sure."
"Anyway, did you have more news?" Ron asked.
"Oh, yeah. Well Cedric thanked me for helping him out with the first task and returned the favor by giving me a little tip," Harry began.
"He figured out what the egg says?" Ron asked.
"Well, yeah, but that's not what he told me. He told me to go take it to the prefects' bathroom on the fifth floor and listen to it underwater." Harry said.
"I wonder how he figured that out," Ron said.
"I dunno, but I did what he said and I found out what the egg says!" Harry announced.
"Oh, thank God! The next task is tomorrow!" I exclaimed.
"So what does it say?" Hermione asked.
"So I opened it underwater," he continued. "And it… sang."
"Who sang?" Ron asked.
"The egg can sing?"
"Oh, just tell us what it sang!" I exclaimed.
"Okay! It sang, 'Come seek us where our voices sound. We cannot sing above the ground. An hour long you'll have to look, to recover what we took.'" Harry recited.
"Hmm. Let's go the library after dinner. We don't want anyone listening," Hermione said.
We all agreed and headed off to the library once we were finished eating. But we went off in pairs, Ron and Hermione, and Harry and I. Just in case anyone was watching and wanted to follow.
"Let's take the longer way," Harry suggested. "You know, to confuse them."
"Sounds good," I said.
We walked awkwardly in silence for a moment until Harry said, "Can we sit down for a second?"
"Sure. What's wrong?" I asked, as he led me over to a bench.
He studied my face for a minute. "What?" I asked.
"You can talk to me," Harry said.
"I know you're not really okay. Not with the whole… Derrick thing, anyway," Harry stated.
"Of course I'm okay. I've had time to get over it," I lied and looked away.
Too late. He saw through my lie. "No you haven't. Not enough time."
I sighed. There's no getting out of this now. "I don't know what else to do. I've gotten rid of everything that reminds me of him, I've vented my feelings to Myrtle, and I've even confronted him. What's left? What else am I supposed to do to get over him… no, this. This whole thing. I'm over him, of course I am. Just maybe not what he did. You know?"
"I know what you mean. So you say you've already vented?" Harry asked.
"Yeah, the night of the ball," I answered.
"But I really felt like you needed to talk to me," Harry said.
"Maybe I do, Harry. Myrtle gives good advice, but you're my best friend. You're the person I turn to for help, the shoulder I cry on… the one who most understands me," I said.
Harry smiled. "Well your shoulder to cry on is here to understand you and help you."
"Thank you, Harry. You don't know how great it is to have a friend like you when my life is so hectic," I said.
"Actually, I do. Remember? I have a crazy life, too. And you're not even the one in the tournament," Harry replied.
"That's true," I said.
"And talking to you is when I feel most comfortable. I want you to know that what Derrick did to you… it's just so stupid. It makes me want to punch him in the face. Why would he do that to you, of all people? He really doesn't know what he's lost, Chris," Harry said.
I grinned and rested my head on his shoulder. "That's very sweet of you, Harry. I can always count on you to make me feel better."
"You feel better?" Harry asked.
"Somewhat," I answered.
"I also want you to know I would never, ever even think to do that to you. If I ever broke your heart or lost you, I would never forgive myself," Harry said.
My heart skipped a beat. No one has ever said anything like that to me before! Harry really is sweet. Maybe I could love him in… that way. I looked up at Harry and grinned from ear to ear.
"You have no idea how happy that makes me," I said to him.
Harry grinned, too, and then kissed my forehead. I'm not sure if it was a lovey-dovey, in love kind of kiss on the forehead, but it was definitely some kind of love. And I return that love back to him, whatever kind of love it is.
We walked to the library, hand in hand, smiling at each other the whole way.
"Okay, Harry. Tell me again," Hermione said, furiously writing down notes.
"Come seek us where our voices sound," Harry recited. "We cannot sing above the ground."
"Black lake," she said, writing it down underneath the first line. "Obviously the merpeople of the lake. Next?"
"An hour long you'll have to look, to recover what we took," Harry finished.
Ron, who was leaning against a bookcase, said, "An hour long? Does that mean you'll have to be underwater for an hour?"
"Sounds like it," I said.
"Well, that can be potentially problematic," Hermione said.
"Potentially problematic? I'm sorry, Hermione, I didn't know you were such a skilled swimmer that you could hold your breath underwater for an hour. Tell me, what's your secret?" Harry said, his voice dripping with sarcasm. I could tell he was worried. This tournament is tomorrow, and we're just figuring out what to do now.
"Harry, just relax. We'll figure this out," I said, pulling out a chair from the table he was sitting at and sitting next to him. I grabbed his hand under the table and squeezed it to remind him of our earlier conversation. I'm here, I tried to say with that little gesture.
Ignoring Harry's sarcastic remark, Hermione said, "Now we just need to figure out what they took and how you'll hold your breath for an hour."
"Can't you help him out with the underwater part, Chris?" Ron asked.
"No! That'd be cheating," I replied.
"No, I won't make her do that," Harry said. I squeezed his hand again.
"Of course not. We can figure something out," Hermione agreed, giving Ron a disapproving look.
"Sorry to interrupt this little study session, but Professor McGonagall needs to see you in her office," a voice from behind us said.
I turned to see Mad-Eye Moody emerging from the shadows. How long had he been there? I forgot how much of a bad feeling he gave me. I glanced at Harry to see if he was thinking the same thing. I could feel his body stiffen because I was still holding his hand. He held mine tighter. I guess he is thinking the same thing.
"For what?" Ron asked.
"She'll explain once you three are in her office," Moody said.
"Three?" Hermione asked.
"Yes, I believe that is what I said," Moody snapped.
Harry let go of my hand and rose from his chair.
"Not you, Potter. Just Granger, Weasely and Godrick," Moody said.
Harry sat back down. Harry gave me a look that I recognized clearly. It said, Be on your guard. I nodded. We're on the same page.
"Professor," Hermione said. "Tomorrow's the tournament and we need to help Harry. I'm sure Professor McGonagall could see us another -"
"No," Moody interrupted. "I'm assuming Harry is ready for tomorrow. He could use a good night's rest."
"Of course, sir, but -" Hermione started.
"Longbottom!" Moody called out, interrupting Hermione again. Hermione is furious.
Neville came around a corner, and said, "Yes, sir?"
How long had Neville been there?
"Help Potter put all those books back in their proper places," Moody ordered Neville. "Now come with me." He said to Hermione, Ron and I.
"Can you tell us what Professor McGonagall wants now?" I asked curiously.
"No," Moody answered, without even looking back at us. We were following him now as he lead us to McGonagall's office. It must be important if Moody's being so secretive. But, then again, he's always been mysterious.
I have no idea what Harry will do, but he's got less than 24 hours to come up with something! If Harry doesn't, I'll be forced to use magic to help him sooner or later. Hopefully later.
The whole way to McGonagall's office, I listened to Harry's unspoken advice, and stayed on my guard. My body was on high alert. I kept close to Hermione and Ron in case anything happened and I had to be the heroic one.
Finally, we reached McGonagall's office - and in my eyes, safety. I wasn't as tense when we walked in, but I was still on high alert.
"Good afternoon," Professor McGonagall greeted us. She was seated at her desk, waiting patiently for us.
"Good afternoon, Professor," we said. Moody stood by McGonagall's desk. There were no chairs in front of McGonagall's desk, so we stood.
"I'm sure you're wondering why you're here," McGonagall said. We didn't say anything so she took it as a sign to go on. "First, let me start by asking you this question. Which of you, Ronald or Chris, does Harry Potter care for the most?"
This question took me by surprise. I think it took all three of us by surprise.
"What do you mean?" Hermione asked.
"I mean exactly what I said. Which of you two does Harry care for the most? Of course, he must care for both of you. But I'm asking which of you he would save first if you were in danger," McGonagall explained.
"Professor, this isn't an easy question," Hermione said.
"I understand. But this is important," McGonagall said. As if that made it any easier.
"Chris," Ron said.
"Yeah?" I asked, thinking he was going to ask me something.
"No, I mean you are the one he cares for most," Ron said.
"Are… are you sure?" I asked.
"Absolutely," Ron said.
"But you're his best friend, Ron," I said.
"Maybe. But…" Ron trailed off. Then he came closer to me and whispered, "He loves you, Chris."
Whoa. Did not see that coming.
"He… told you that?" I asked.
"No, but I can see it," Ron said.
"So, is that the answer? Chris is who Harry cares for most?" McGonagall asked.
"Yes," Ron said.
"Okay. You may leave. I suggest you go to the Boy's Dormitory and get some sleep, Ronald," McGonagall said.
"Can I know what this was all about at least?" Ron asked.
"You'll understand tomorrow, Mr. Weasely," McGonagall calmly said.
"Yes, ma'am," Ron said, looking around the room one last time and then leaving.
"Alright, girls. Now I can tell you what's going on. This all has to do with the tournament tomorrow. Do you have any idea what the task is?" McGonagall asked.
"We know that it will take place in the Black Lake and the contestants will have to recover what the merpeople took from them… whatever that is. And they have an hour to do so," Hermione answered, matter-of-factly.
"That's right. So you don't know what the contestants have to recover? Well that's what you two are here for. Miss Granger, you are what Viktor Krum will have to recover. And you, Miss Godrick, are what Harry Potter will have to recover," McGonagall explained.
"So that's why you asked who he cared for most?" I asked.
"Exactly," she replied.
"So, we'll be underwater for an hour, too?" Hermione asked.
"Actually, over an hour. We need to get you in the lake before any spectators get there. Don't worry, magic will keep you unconscious until your contestant brings you to the surface tomorrow," she answered.
Somehow being unconscious doesn't seem very fun.
"When will we be put… unconscious?" Hermione asked.
"That's what Professor Moody is here for. You will be put under a spell shortly," McGonagall said. "Anything else you'd like to ask before we put you under the spell?"
"Just one. Who are the other contestants rescuing?" I asked.
"Cedric Diggory will be recovering Cho Chang and Fleur Delacour will be recovering her little sister," McGonagall answered.
Cho Chang. Harry's crush. The girl who turned down Harry when he asked her to the ball. And I thank you, Cho Chang. Because you made Harry and I closer.
"Okay, if there's no more questions… Moody?" McGonagall turned to Moody.
"Alright, girls," he said, stepping forward and taking two vials of a purple potion out of his jacket pockets. "Drink these." He said, giving one to each of us.
"You may want to sit down," Moody said, pushing two chairs towards us.
We gladly sat down and popped open the vials. I looked at Hermione. "Cheers," I joked. We put our vials together and then chugged them until we drank the very last drop.
"You'll grow tired. You'll be asleep in a minute," Moody said.
As he was saying it, I could feel my eyelids drooping and my whole body relaxing. I'm no longer on high alert, but it's okay. I'll be asleep soon. The first thing I see when I wake up tomorrow will be Harry's face after rescuing me from the dark depths of the lake. I can't wait to see him… he's going to rescue me… like my knight in shining armor… my knight…
I'm in a tower. This doesn't make sense. I'm supposed to be at the lake. Harry should have rescued me… what's going on? The circular room I'm in has only one window and no other furniture, except a fireplace and mirror. First I went over to the fireplace. The fire is small. Did whoever put me here make this fire? If so, I must have been here for a while. Wait a minute… I see something in the fire. It's a picture. I bent down to get a closer look. It's a picture of me and Derrick. What is that doing in there? I already burned them all.
Oh, no. Something just occurred to me. What if something bad happened to Harry? And Moody or someone equally creepy put me here? Am I being held captive? Oh, my God! I have to find a way out of here!
I ran over to the door and tried to open it. Locked. That's okay, this isn't something my magic can't handle! Get me out of here, I thought, pointing at the lock. I expected the door to open or the lock to spontaneously burst into flames or something along those lines… but nothing happened. I tried to open it again. No luck this time.
Come on, unlock! I thought, pointing at the lock again.
Again nothing happened. That doorknob won't budge.
"Please!" I shouted out loud, but didn't mean to.
Harry's possibly hurt! Or worse! I need to go find him!
"The window!" I exclaimed. I started to go to it, but I caught a flash of gold in the corner of my eye. It's my reflection in the full-length mirror.
This is… so strange. I'm wearing a gold Victorian gown, with a giant hoop skirt and a sweetheart neckline. The gown is floor-length and the sleeves are longer than my arms! This is definitely not something you would find in a modern boutique! It's got so many layers! And I'm wearing a corset! Why hadn't I noticed this before? The dress is so heavy and hot, yet I feel so… cold. Cold? Why am I cold? Forget that, I still need to find a way out of here.
I continued on to the window and looked down. Oh, God. It's a long way down! I don't think there's a chance that I would live if I jumped down. Hey, wait a minute. This view is not something you would see looking out a window at Hogwarts.
I'm surrounded by green! So many green trees and bushes! And I can't even see any body of water when Hogwarts should have one nearby. Actually, I can't see much at all. There's a huge mountain blocking my view. This isn't right. Where did Moody put me?
I need a ladder, I thought, trying to conjure up a ladder. Nothing. I can't even feel the magic flowing throughout my body like I normally can. Usually, my body is filled with power. So much that I feel like I could… take on the world, I guess you could say. But this time, there's nothing. I've got no magic. I'm useless.
I'm stuck in a tower, with no way to get out, no way to know where I am, no Harry, and no magic. Oh, and I'm wearing a princess-like gown that I can't explain, for the life of me, why or how I'm wearing it.
"Princess!" someone shouted. Princess? They must be mistaken. There's no "princess" here. Just useless, no-magic me. But maybe they could help.
I leaned out the window and called out, "Who are you? Can you please help me? I'm stuck in here with no way to - wait… where are you?" I asked. I can hear the voice, but I can't find the person the voice belongs to.
"Under here!" the voice said. And then a man on a horse appeared, decked out in medieval knight armor.
"Whoa, how did you- ?" I started to ask, but then I realized. That man just took off his Cloak of Invisibility.
"Who are you? Where did you get that?" I asked. The only person who has a Cloak like that is Harry. And that is not Harry.
"Oh, this? I got it from Professor Dumbledore, don't you remember?" the man asked.
Dumbledore had another one? "No I don't remember; I don't know who you are!" I exclaimed.
A look of disappointment and sadness came upon the man's face. "You don't know who I am?"
I shook my head.
"Well, I - I know it's been a long time, but I promised you I would come save you. And here I am. I loved you. And still do! Why can't you remember?" the man said.
"I'm sorry, but you must have me mistaken for someone else. I don't know how I got up here. Last thing I knew I was at Hogwarts… and I was at McGonagall's office… and I was drinking something to put me to sleep for the tournament the next day," I explained.
"You remember five years ago but not two months ago?" the astonished man asked.
"Five years ago?"
"Yes! The tournament! It was our fourth year, right?" the man said. "That was one of the best - and at the same time one of the worst - years at Hogwarts I had."
"Our fourth year?" I asked. "Wait, what's your name?"
"It's me, princess! Harry!"
Oh, my God! I've been trying to get out of here to save Harry, but yet here he is trying to save me. Well, I was trying to save a fourteen year old Harry, not a nineteen year old Harry like the one standing outside the tower now.
"Harry!" I joyfully exclaimed. "I'm so happy to see you!"
His face lit up with joy. "You do remember me!"
"Of course! It's just that the last time I remember seeing you, you were fourteen!"
"Fourteen? Two months ago is when I saw you last. Before he kidnapped you."
"Who kidnapped me? Was it Moody? I always knew he was not someone to trust."
"Moody? No, no, no! Moody wouldn't do such a thing! Your kidnapper is Voldemort!"
"Voldemort did this?"
"Yes," Harry replied, looking angry. "He wants you. For your power. He said he wants me dead, and you for himself so you two can 'rule the world'. He wants you as his 'Princess of Darkness'. There's only one thing that Voldemort and I could ever agree on. And that's that you're a princess. In his eyes, you're a Princess of Darkness that could rule the world along his side and make a good evil companion. In my eyes… you're my princess. And you could never do anything evil, not even if Voldemort forced you to. You have a heart of gold and the pureness of an angel. You're bold and beautiful, fearless and loving. And that's everything that I love about you."
His expression went from anger to pure love, and it brought tears to my eyes. One tear escaped and fell down my cheek as I said, "Harry, you've been my best friend through thick and thin. You know just what to say to make me feel better. You're courageous and handsome. And you're my knight in shining armor," Harry smiled at that, looking down at his elaborate costume shyly. "And I love you, too." I finished.
By now more tears were falling down my face as I realized that this is what I had been waiting for. Derrick never loved me like Harry does now. That's for sure.
"Don't be sad, princess! I'll get you down as soon as I can!" Harry promised.
"I'm not sad, Harry, these are tears of joy! And I know you will. I know you'll do anything to save me, like I would for you," I said.
Then the cold sensation came back. No, now I'm freezing. It's like I just got out of a pool and into the winter weather. "Harry?" I asked.
"Are you cold, too?"
"No. Are you cold? What's he doing to you? Don't worry, you'll be safe soon and I'll hold you in my arms. Whatever it takes! I'll do it! Just hold on while I think of a plan," Harry said.
"Harry!" I whined as I got even colder. "Help!"
"What is it?"
"I'm… I'm being dragged!" I screamed and kicked and flailed my arms around, trying to hit whoever's pulling me backward.
"Princess!" was the last thing I heard from that nineteen year old Harry, because the next thing I saw was just complete darkness…
…And then I was gasping for air at the surface of the Black Lake. When my quick second of confusion was over, I took in my surroundings and recognized the docks by the deepest end of the lake, but now they're filled with spectators. For the tournament. And they were all cheering. But some were worriedly looking around. I did, too, to find out what was missing. Not what, who. It's Harry. He's not here. He should have rescued me.
"Aide! Aide!" a little girl yelled in what sounded like French.
Treading water a couple feet away, was a little blonde girl, probably from Beauxbaton, shouting in French. Judging by the way she was gasping for air, panicking and treading water helplessly, it seems like she's having trouble swimming.
"Please help her, Chris! That's my sister! She can't swim! Please!" Fleur Delacour called from one of the docks. She was dripping wet, shivering violently and covering herself with a few different towels. Some of her Beauxbaton friends were huddling around her, trying to keep her warm.
Then I sprang into action. I swam doggy-style over to Fleur's sister. I didn't dare swim the breaststroke for fear of making the water too choppy and upsetting Fleur's sister, making her nervous. If she gets any more nervous, she'll flail her limbs around until both of us go down. I've got to be heroic until Harry gets back from… wherever he is.
"Get on your back!" I told Fleur's sister.
She gladly did so and I gently pushed her along with my hands under her, ready to catch her if something happens. She was breathing heavily, but calming down more. We finally reached the dock, where Ron was crouched down.
"Ron!" I said. I didn't need to say more. I held up Fleur's sister and passed her to Ron, who got her safely on the dock with a towel wrapped around her.
"Ron, where's Harry?" I asked.
"Unfortunately, I don't know," Ron replied.
"Okay, I'm going to look for him then," I said, starting to swim away.
"No, don't! You'll freeze and you can't hold your breath that long," Ron said. This didn't convince me and he knew it. So he said, "He'll be back, Chris. You know Harry."
That's true. I do know him. And I know he'll find a way to get out of the water and back to me. So Ron convinced me to get up on the dock. I hoisted my self up with my arms and Ron grabbed hold of my hand and pulled me up.
"Thank you," I said.
He nodded and handed me a towel.
"So how did Harry figure out how to stay underwater for an hour?" I asked Ron.
"Neville helped him out with something called gilliweed," Ron said.
"Oh, I'll have to thank Neville later," I said.
"For what?" Ron asked.
"For saving Harry's life, basically," I replied.
"Chris! Ron! Thank you! Thank you so much!" Fleur cried, practically in tears. She gave me a hug and kissed Ron on the cheek. Ron looked like he was about to faint. I giggled.
"Merci!" Fleur's sister said to both me and Ron.
"You're welcome," I told the girl. "I'm just glad to help." I told Fleur. She smiled and walked away, holding her sister close.
Now back to worrying about Harry. Ron saw my worried expression and said, "He'll turn up soon."
Just then, everyone gasped. The gasps turned into applause and cheers. I turned to see Harry flying out of the water and landing on the middle dock. The dock next to the one I was standing on.
"Harry!" I shouted. I fumbled my way over to the middle dock and pushed through the crowd to where Harry lay, spitting out water and breathing heavily.
I took off my towel and wrapped it around Harry when he sat up.
"Someone get him another towel!" Barty Crouch barked an order to no one in particular. Someone ran off and came back, handing me a dry towel.
I wrapped that one around him too and kissed his head. He's soaking wet, but I don't care. He's in one piece.
"Harry!" Hermione exclaimed, pulling Harry into a hug. "What on earth happened down there?"
I'd been so happy to see that Harry was alive, I'd forgotten to ask what happened! Hermione was wet, too, but obviously didn't care. She was dryer than me. Krum must have saved her before Harry saved Fleur's sister and I.
"I tried to save you, too, Hermione. Before I saw Krum," Harry began explaining. Of course. Harry was trying to be a hero. "But the merpeople stopped me from trying to save anyone but Chris. Then Krum came for you. Cedric had already saved Cho by then. So then I saw Fleur's sister, and I knew Fleur couldn't save her. I saw her get trapped in the weeds earlier. I loosened Fleur's sister's rope and grabbed you, Chris, and then tried to get to the surface. But I don't think the creatures of the lake liked that I saved someone I wasn't supposed to. They kept dragging me down! I let you and the blonde girl float to the surface. I knew you would take it from there, Chris. But then I almost didn't make it to the surface… the creatures kept attacking me and dragging me. I remembered my wand then, and said a spell that propelled me out of the water, which is when I landed here." Harry finished.
But I almost didn't make it to the surface, Harry had said. That's the sentence that most caught my attention. Harry could have been knocked unconscious… and then what would happen? Soon the gilliweed would run out and Harry would have never made it to the surface alive. What would I do then?
I don't even want to think about it anymore. I just want to focus on what's happening now. "I'm glad you're safe. And thank you for saving me," I said to Harry, grabbing his hand and holding it gently in mine. I tried to smile even though all I could think about was never seeing Harry again.
"Of course. How could I not save you?" Harry replied, smiling back at me.
"Harry, you did a wonderful job!" Hermione praised.
"I finished last, Hermione," Harry said.
"No, next to last," I said.
"It doesn't matter when you finished, anyway. What matters is that you tried to save me and you saved Fleur's sister, even though we weren't yours to save. I'd say that's an honorable act to be proud of, Harry," Hermione said.
I nodded in agreement.
"Well, none of that really matters in the tournament," Harry said.
Tournament, tournament, tournament. Is that all that matters? Not to me. I'm proud of Harry, even though he almost got himself killed.
"Attention! Attention!" Dumbledore's voice boomed. He had his wand pressed to his throat, using a charm that made it sound like he was speaking into a loudspeaker. "The winner is… Mr. Diggory!"
Everyone around us erupted into applause, especially Cedric's crowd of friends and Cho.
Dumbledore continued, "For his excellent usage of the bubblehead charm. Mr. Potter would have finished first, but he stopped to try to save not only Miss Godrick, but the others as well. For this, I have decided to reward Mr. Potter second place!"
Harry grinned and pumped the air with his fist. I couldn't help myself. I threw my arms around him and gave him a Chris-hug. Ron appeared beside us and cheered along with Fred, George, the Patil sisters, Seamus and many others.
Harry, Hermione, Ron, Fred, George and I walked back to Hogwarts together. Harry and I held hands the whole way, despite the fact that no one else knew about us. Well, what is with us anyway? I've got feelings for him… and I think he's got feelings for me, too. I mean, he should, shouldn't he? After all the sweet things he's said to me… and then there's the times we've held hands. Like now. I'm so aware of Harry walking beside me. That sounds weird, of course I should be aware. But I can feel him breathing, feel his heart beating and I notice when he slightly moves without looking at him. I wonder if he can, too?
"Second place, eh," Fred said. Harry beamed. I'm so proud of him!
"Even when you do something wrong, it ends up right," Ron commented, chuckling.
"And you got the girl, too, Harry!" George added, winking at Harry.
I blushed and giggled nervously. I glanced at Harry to see that he was also a little embarrassed and looking down at the ground so they wouldn't see.
"Oh, don't be embarrassed! You two are so cute!" Hermione cooed.
That only made me blush even more instead of making me feel any better, but Harry seemed to lighten up a bit. I caught a glimpse of the same Harry I saw in my dream when I had recognized him.
A dream… that's all it was. Though it seemed so real. Well, not exactly real because I was wearing a Victorian gown and I was in the middle of nowhere, in an unguarded tower. That's not Voldemort's style. Anyway, I sort of wanted it to be real. The Harry part anyway. The fact that the nineteen year old Harry in my dream had promised to save me, prepared himself, and then had come to rescue me when he was ready from the evil Voldemort. Just like a princess in the Muggle fairy tales. Is that why he called me princess? Or was it just a pet name? It was cute, whatever it was, but I don't think I'll be getting called princess in the real world. It's bit cheesy for Harry's taste, no matter how romantic it was in my dream.
I was lost in my thoughts for a moment, but brought out of it when I felt Harry's body tense. I couldn't sense any danger, so I couldn't tell why… until Fred, George, Hermione, and Ron awkwardly drifted away from Harry and I. Then I saw Barty Crouch, looking at Harry as if he had been waiting for him. Then Barty saw me, saw my hand holding Harry's, and then looked back up to me.
"I'll come with you," I said to Harry. It wasn't a question, it was a statement. I'm not leaving Harry until I really have to. Harry just nodded in response.
"Ah, Harry!" Barty said as we reached him. "Congratulations! Second place. What a fine achievement. I'm sorry I haven't gotten the chance to speak to you. I've heard your story so many times. Tragic, of course, to lose your family, but still quite remarkable. Were you ever able to be whole again? Bah, life goes on, eh? And here you are. Your parents would be very proud, I'm sure, Mr. Potter."
Barty just kept going on and on, not getting to the point. I noticed he didn't say anything about me. Has he not heard my story? Is it not remarkable also? Although, I guess it's a good thing that he didn't mention my parents. It's a sensitive subject. I'm sure it must be the same for Harry, yet Barty won't shut up! I was about to clear my throat loudly to get the message across, but Mad-Eye Moody appeared before I could.
"Bartimus!" Moody said. "You're not trying to lure Potter or Miss Godrick into one of your summer internships at the ministry, are you? The last young wizard never came out."
I'm assuming Moody is joking, or just pushing Barty's buttons, but there is nothing cheerful about Moody's tone of voice. It's actually pretty ominous to me. I inched over more to Harry, trying to feel more safe.
Without another word, just one last glare at Moody, Barty walked away.
Moody snorted. "And they say I'm mad."
I don't know about mad, but mysterious and ominous, definitely.
"Oh, I remember your first year here," Hagrid reminisced.
"We were quite a group, weren't we?" Ron asked.
"Oh, yes. Weirdest bunch of misfits I had ever laid my eyes on," Hagrid joked.
Harry, Hermione, Ron, Hagrid and I were enjoying a walk together in the forest. Harry and I were walking together a little farther away from the others.
"We're still misfits," Hermione laughed.
"Well, we've still got each other!" Hagrid said. "And Harry! Soon to be the youngest Tri-wizard Tournament champion ever!"
Ron, Hermione, and Hagrid cheered and began singing the Hogwarts song.
"Have I told you how proud I am of you?" I asked Harry.
"No," he grinned. "Thanks."
As quickly as the grin appeared, it disappeared and Harry screamed in agony.
"Harry, what's the matter?" I yelled.
But I understood then. He clutched his head and groaned. His scar.
"You're scar! But why isn't mine -" I started to ask why mine wasn't burning, but then mine started to burn, too.
The burning started in my forehead and eventually my whole head was throbbing with the migraine from hell. I involuntarily let out a cry of pain, alarming Hagrid, Ron, and Hermione.
"Oh, my God!" I exclaimed. I haven't felt this much pain from my scar since the incident at the Quidditch game.
"What the bloody hell is making our scars hurt?" Harry asked. "Wait - what's that over there?"
I looked to where he was pointing and saw what he meant.
"It's a shoe…?" I said.
We slowly moved toward the shoe beside a tree ahead of us. As we got closer, I could see that the shoe was attached to a leg…
"Mr. Crouch?" said Harry.
I stood near Harry and saw Barty Crouch's lifeless body, propped up against a tree.
I gasped and kneeled down beside the body. I grabbed Barty's wrist and felt for his pulse. There was none.
"No pulse," I announced. Harry sighed.
I never thought I'd see another dead body of an innocent person. Just a few hours ago, that man was living and breathing. I can't say I liked him that much… but it still affected me, seeing him pale-skinned and lifeless.
Sirius was right; there is a devil walking in the halls of Hogwarts. Any suspicion of Barty Crouch has been proven wrong. Sirius' other suspect is Igor Karkaroff, but he hasn't done anything to make me believe he is the one causing all of this grief. Mad-Eye Moody is still on my list. I'm always feeling uneasy around him.
So, this devil has gone as far as killing a man of the Ministry. Is this something against the Ministry or the Minister himself? It's possible, but it doesn't explain why they would put Harry's name in the Goblet of Fire. It's got to be the same person doing this. Dumbledore is a smart man, with an equally smart staff of loyal wizards and witches. How could they let two devils inside the safe walls of Hogwarts?
"Harry, don't you think we should go talk to Dumbledore about this?" I had asked Harry after we found Mr. Crouch's body.
"Why? Hagrid already went back and told Dumbledore about it," Harry had said.
"I know, but we're the ones who found his body. Doesn't that sound a little strange? We were going for a nighttime stroll in the Forbidden Forest and happened to stumble upon this dead body," I said.
"What are you saying? You think we look like potential suspects?"
"If that's the case, then we've got three other witnesses who were there when we found the body, too. And we didn't 'stumble upon' the body. Our scars led us to it. If our scars were hurting, we couldn't have done it. It was Dark Magic. Our three witnesses can back us up when we say our scars hurt. They heard us cry out in pain. There's no need to worry," Harry assured me.
Everything Harry said is right, but I can't help feeling like we should talk to Dumbledore about it. "It doesn't matter. I still say we should go see Dumbledore. See what he thinks of it, you know?"
"Okay, if you really want to," Harry said.
"Just knock on the door, Harry," I told him once we stopped in front of the door to Dumbledore's office.
"Wait a second, I can hear more than one voice in there," Harry said.
"It's probably just Hagrid, telling the whole story."
I pressed my ear gently against the door and listened.
"A man has died…," I heard Dumbledore say. His next few words were muffled. Then, I picked up the words, "Won't be the last… take action."
"I can't hear much!" I whispered softly to Harry.
Neither can I, his expression told me.
Harry and I need better hearing, I thought.
"Take action? I won't do that. These children need to look up to their leaders for strength, Albus," a voice I recognized as Cornelius Fudge, the Minister of Magic, said.
"So show some strength, for once," Dumbledore snapped.
"The tournament will not be cancelled! I cannot be seen as a coward."
"But do what's right, Cornelius. Forget about what others think," Dumbledore tried to persuade.
"What did you just say to me?" Fudge asked angrily.
"Excuse me, gentlemen. This conversation is being listened to with unwelcome ears," a third voice announced.
I froze. What's Moody doing in there? And how did he know Harry and I were here? I quickly took the super-hearing off of Harry and I. The doors swung open to reveal a bewildered Dumbledore, an enraged Fudge, and Moody with is unattached eye darting around the room.
Harry and I entered nervously.
"Harry! And Miss Godrick! Ah, how nice to see you two again!" Fudge exclaimed, his mood seeming to suddenly lighten.
"We just came to talk, Professor Dumbledore," Harry said, ignoring Fudge.
"Yes," I agreed. "We can come back later."
"Oh, just a second, children. The Minister and I are about done. Minister, after you," Dumbledore said, gesturing to Fudge, leading him towards another, more private, room. Moody followed. "If either of you would like a treat, help yourselves to some liquorices while I'm gone. But be warned, they're a bit sharp." Dumbledore said with a wink.
"That was odd," I commented.
Harry reached inside the bowl of liquorices and grabbed a handful of the snacks.
"Would you like one?" Harry asked.
Before I could answer, one of the snacks turned into a small creature and snapped at his hand.
"Agh!" Harry exclaimed.
I giggled. "No, thanks."
Harry dropped the rest back into the bowl and examined his hand. I took it and spotted a small red circle on his ring finger.
Heal Harry's hand, I thought, touching the red circle with one finger. The redness faded and it no longer swelled.
"Thanks," Harry smiled.
A noise from the far corner of the room startled us. It sounded like stone pushing against rougher stone. The noise stopped with a resounding boom. I looked towards the door that the three men had entered, expecting to see them storming in and asking what we touched. But nothing happened. Surely they must've heard that.
Harry turned around to where the noise came from. "What was that?" he asked.
"I'm gonna find out," I said. I walked past Harry and to where I heard the noise.
Sitting in a hollow compartment in a corner of the room, was a blue pool of water that was oddly glowing. Harry was following close behind, and gasped when he saw the glowing, blue water.
"What is it?" I asked.
Harry shrugged. "I've never seen anything like it before."
Harry leaned over the pool and looked in.
"Strange…," Harry muttered.
"Careful! Don't lean in too far," I told Harry.
"Please," Harry laughed and leaned in farther. He suddenly fell in with his face plunging into the pool.
"Harry! We don't know how deep that water is!" I exclaimed.
But Harry made no move to try to get his face out. In fact, he was completely still.
Still no movement.
"Harry, please, you're scaring me!" I said. This better not be some practical joke. It really looks like he drowned.
I moved closer to tap his shoulder, but when I got closer I saw the glowing, blue water swirling around inside the pool. I leaned over beside Harry and looked in just as he did. The curiosity pulled me in and I plunged my face in the pool.
Suddenly, I found myself falling for a few brief seconds. I landed on my feet in a room I had never seen before. To my right was a man dressed in dress robes, with a stern look on his face. He didn't seem to notice that I had just fallen beside him. People like him were all over the place. None of them noticed I was there either. To my left, I was surprised to see Harry.
He turned to me, with the same bewildered expression I probably had on my face, too.
"How did we get here?" he asked.
"No idea. I just looked in the blue water like you did… and then I sort of fell here."
"So did I. But look who's on the left of me," Harry said.
I did what he said. And there was Professor Dumbledore, long, white beard and all.
"Professor?" I called out to him.
"It's no use. He can't hear us," said Harry.
I turned to the man on the right of me and said, "Excuse me, sir?"
He made no indication that he had heard me.
"Nobody can hear us," I said.
"Where are we anyway?" Harry asked.
I took a look at my surroundings. Everyone in the room was seated, except for some who were filing in through the doors. Dumbledore seemed to be waiting patiently for something. Something to start, maybe? By looking around, it seems to me like we're in a courtroom. Sitting at a desk, not too far away, is Barty Crouch!
"Harry, look! It's Crouch!" I said, pointing to where he sat.
"Wha -? That's not possible! We found him dead today!"
"Well, the Barty Crouch sitting there will disagree with you," I joked.
Before Harry could comment back, a man walked through our row, looking for an empty seat. He stopped in front of us and tried to sit down between Harry and I. I couldn't scoot over to make room and neither could Harry, but the man still tried to sit in the tiny space between Harry and I. And we were sitting very close.
"Um, sir!" I said, trying to get his attention. But he didn't hear me. While Harry and I prepared to be sat on, Dumbledore saw the man that was going to sit on us and recognized that he even existed, unlike us.
The man proceeded to sit on us, but instead of feeling the man's weight on me, I felt nothing. His body literally went through ours. Half his body was through mine and the other half was through Harry's. Like Harry's body and my body were no longer solid.
"Agh. I can't feel his body… and apparently he can't feel ours either," Harry said.
"So no one can hear us, see us, or feel us?" I asked.
"I guess not."
"Okay, this is the last time I snoop around Dumbledore's office!" I exclaimed.
"Try to think. Has your uncle told you about anything like that pool of water? Glowing and blue… possibly taking you to another place… or time?" Harry asked.
"Traveling to another place or time… like time traveling? But not like the Time Turner Hermione had last year." Harry shook his head at that. "You know, Professor Dumbledore and Crouch do look a bit younger than usual. Could we be looking in on one of Dumbledore's memories?"
"Anything is possible," Harry said.
"If this is a memory, then I think I might know what that pool of water was."
"A pensieve. Uncle George used to have one. Well, that's what he told me. I've never seen one until today. It's where he stored his memories when his head was getting too occupied. He could look in on these memories when he wanted. Sometimes he spotted things he missed when they happened in real life, and sometimes he paid attention to the little details that could explain what happened. It was useful, but he stopped using it since he decided he was done with magic," I explained.
"What did he do with it?" Harry asked.
"I don't know. Maybe he sold it. Maybe he kept it. Or maybe he just threw it away."
"Professor," the man who sat on us said, turning to Dumbledore. He and Dumbledore shook hands. Their hands went through Harry's body, like the man's body went through my body and Harry's body.
Then the doors closed, everyone quickly found a seat, and faced forward. A cage rose from the floor. Inside was a younger-looking Igor Karkaroff.
"Igor Karkaroff!" Barty said. "You've been taken here from Azkaban, as you wished, to represent yourself in court and show this counsel some evidence. As of now, you are a convicted Death Eater to the Ministry. If proven otherwise, the counsel may release you. Do you accept these terms?"
"Yes," Igor replied.
"All right, what do you have to present to the counsel?"
"Names, sir. Rosier. Evan Rosier."
"That man is dead," said Crouch.
"Dead?" said Igor, who seemed surprised.
Mad-Eye Moody, who I hadn't noticed before because he was sitting on the other side of Dumbledore, said to Dumbledore, "And the bloke took a piece of me with him." He pointed to his mechanical contraption that was his eye.
"Oh, I didn't know!" Igor continued.
"If that is all you have to offer…," Crouch began.
"No," Igor interrupted. "No! Er, there was a spy! Rookwood!"
"Augustus Rookwood?" said Crouch disbelievingly. "Of the Ministry?"
"Yes, yes! The very same! A spy, I tell you! Passing information from the Ministry to You-Know-Who himself!"
"All right then… the counsel will deliberate. You will be returned to Azkaban," said Barty.
"No! Wait! PLEASE! I have more," Igor pleaded. Barty paused. Igor said gravely, "Snape. Severus Snape."
I gasped, astonished. Harry turned to me. Instead of looking surprised, though, his expression said, I knew it! I knew it all along! I was right! Ha!
Then Dumbledore spoke up, "The counsel knows that you have given this evidence. Severus was indeed a Death Eater, and before Voldemort's downfall, he became a spy for us. Even though it was a big risk. He's no longer a Death Eater."
When Dumbledore said that last sentence, Sirius' words came to mind. "No one ever stops being a Death Eater. Not after what happened with your uncle, Chris," he had told Harry and I.
"Lies!" Igor protested. "Snape is still loyal to the Dark Lord!"
"Silence!" Barty bellowed, hitting his gavel several times.
It seems that I'm the only one that was surprised to hear that Snape was - or is, I'm still not sure - a Death Eater.
"Unless you can provide a name with greater consequence, this court is dismissed."
"No! No, no, no, no. I heard about one more name…," said Igor slyly.
"What is it?" Barty asked.
"The name… is…," Igor said slowly, creating suspense.
"And I know for a fact that this person took part in the capture, and by means of the Cruciatus Curse, torture of the auror Frank Longbottom…," Igor continued.
I shuddered. That's Neville's father. Both his parents were put under the Cruciatus Curse… and now they are in St. Mungo's hospital. Neville lives with his grandmother and visits his parents occasionally.
"Just give me the name!" Barty shouted.
"Barty Crouch… Junior!" Igor finally answered.
Barty Crouch has a son? I thought. No wonder he never mentions him. No wonder nobody has ever mentioned him, for that matter.
The man sitting on Harry and I jumped up and bolted - but not too quickly for Mad-Eye, who zapped him with magic. Barty Jr. fell in the middle of the court, stunned. The whole crowd erupted into chaos. Guards who originally were flanking Barty Crouch, seized Barty Jr.
"Get your hands off me!" Barty Jr. exclaimed. The guards struggled to keep their hold on him.
"Hello, father," Barty Jr. smiled eerily at his father.
Barty Senior, still shocked, snapped back, "You are no son of mine!"
Barty Junior yelled obscenities at his father, getting the last word in before the guards carried him off.
That smile… I've seen it somewhere. The way Barty Junior's tongue quickly flicked across his lips… it's so familiar, too!
I was about to ask Harry if he was thinking the same thing, but then I felt as if I was falling again. But I was falling up this time. The court room went blurry as the scene from Dumbledore's memory faded away. I blinked - and opened my eyes to a new setting. Harry and I are back in Dumbledore's office.
Dumbledore stood alone in his office. "Hello again, children. I was wondering when you'd be back out of the pensieve. You've figured it out, right? You realize what that was?"
"Yes, my uncle had one of those," I said.
"But what was the importance of that memory, Professor?" Harry asked.
"That's just it. That's what I've been trying to figure out. I'm looking for something… something I overlooked, something that will explain what's been going on," Dumbledore answered.
"What has been going on?" I asked.
"Oh, that's something I shouldn't trouble you with. Not this soon, at least," Dumbledore said.
"Professor? What happened to Barty Crouch's son after that?" Harry asked.
"He was sent to Azkaban. Crushed Barty's heart to send his own son to Azkaban, but the evidence was… overwhelming. Why did you want to know?"
"I've been having dreams about him. The first was before school started," Harry began to tell Dumbledore. "In this dream, I'm in a house. Voldemort's there… but he's not human. Wormtail was there, and Crouch's son, too."
"He's the mysterious man in your dreams?" I asked quizzically.
Harry nodded. "I just found that out in there." He pointed to the pensieve.
"So this isn't just one dream? It's repetitive?" Dumbledore asked.
"Yes. Always the same dream," Harry responded. "Do you think that maybe… these dreams could actually be happening?"
"You shouldn't think too much of these dreams, Harry," Dumbledore said. He took his wand and touched it to his temple and as he slowly withdrew his wand from his temple, a string of silver magic flowed through the air and into the pensieve. "Just remember them."
"Do you think Dumbledore's right? That I shouldn't think too much of my dreams?" Harry asked me, while we were walking back to the Gryffindor Common Room from Dumbledore's office.
"I don't know, Harry. I think he meant that you shouldn't forget about them and store them in the back of your mind - or in a pensieve - for later. If that's what he meant, then I agree," I answered.
We're holding hands again, walking very close to each other… but we're still talking to each other like old friends. I could never talk to Derrick like this.
Harry sighed. "I don't know what to believe. Are they just dreams? Or are they what's really happening? All I know is, Voldemort wants you and me. I think he may have sent Crouch's son to bring us to him. If it happened, I mean."
Harry ranted on and on, but all I could think about was him. Harry's in danger. I know it. I didn't tell Harry, but I think his dreams did happen. I think Voldemort sent out his Death Eater, Barty Junior, to get Harry and I. Yes, we're both in danger. But all I care about is Harry. I'm not sure what he wants, but Voldemort won't stop.
I hope it doesn't have anything to do with Uncle George. If it is, he should leave Harry alone. I'm all Uncle George has left in his family, so he should just take me and be done with it.
It's a little quiet… Harry stopped talking.
"Harry? What's wrong?" I asked.
"Shh. Do you hear that?"
I listened closely and heard raised voices coming from a small storage room used for herbs.
"It's a sign, Severus! You know what it means!" Igor Karkaroff's voice said.
The door opened, and sure enough, Snape and Karkaroff emerged from the room. Igor ignored us and left, but Snape lingered.
I backed up, remembering what I heard about Snape in the pensieve.
"Potter," he sneered. "And Godrick. What are you two doing up and about this late?" He looked from Harry to me and then down to our hands, still locked together.
"Well, I'm sure you heard what happened tonight, Professor," I said politely.
"Yes. Anyway. Congratulations, Mr. Potter! Excellent job in the task at the lake… gilliweed?" Snape said with a hint of anger.
"Yes, Professor," Harry answered. Ah, gilliweed. That's what Ron told me Neville gave to Harry for the task.
"Smart, very smart of you. Gilliweed. It's a rare herb, gilliweed. And so is this," Snape said, holding up a small vial of something I didn't recognize. "Do you know what it is?"
Snape looked straight at Harry, so I didn't think I should answer.
"It's called Veritaserum. A truth potion. Three drops, and anybody will tell their darkest secrets. I can't use this on a student because it's forbidden, but if you ever steal from my herbal store again, I may just drop a little of this into your Pumpkin Juice at breakfast."
"What? I've never stolen from there!" Harry exclaimed.
"Professor, I assure you, Harry's never stolen from anywhere!" I said.
"Don't lie to me, Potter. And you," Snape said, turning to me, "Don't try to cover up for him." He look again at our hands and scowled. "I can understand why you took gilliweed, but all of the other things you've taken? No, I don't know the reasoning behind those. Boomslang skin, lacewing flies; I can tell you and your friends are brewing Polyjuice Potion for something, and I will find out what."
He scowled one last time and slammed the door in our faces.
"Didn't Neville bring you that gilliweed?" I asked Harry as we started back towards the common room.
"Yeah, right before the task. He didn't mention where he got it, but I know Neville couldn't have stolen it from anywhere. It's definitely not something he would do," Harry said.
"I know. Whatever, let Snape believe what he wants. When he finds out we haven't been doing anything wrong, he'll forget about it. Now can we please change the subject?"
"Okay, sure. Well what do you think Igor and Snape were talking about before they opened the door?"
"I don't know, Harry! I only heard one sentence from Igor and it doesn't mean much to me right now. 'It's a sign'. It's a vague sentence, how am I supposed to know? I'm not a mind reader, Harry, as much as I'd like to be. Can we talk about something not pertaining to Snape or Igor or anything that has happened today? I'm tired of all of it and I'd just like some rest," I said.
"Sorry. Wait - you can't read minds?" Harry asked.
I gave him a weird look. "Of course not."
Harry looked disappointed. "I thought you could really do anything you wished."
"No! I have some limitations, too, you know!"
Glad to have another subject to talk about, I told Harry about everything that I was sure I couldn't do. "Well, I can't give life. And that means that I can't bring someone back to life, create life, or make an inanimate object live. I can make an inanimate object have human-like qualities, but even then, it doesn't really live."
"Yes, really. Do you think if I could bring something back to life, that my parents would be still be dead?" I said, with more anger than I had intended.
"Right, sorry. I didn't even think about it. What else?"
I tucked away all my sorrows about my parents and continued, "I can't kill just by thinking it or waving my hand around. I have to use the Killing Curse, just like any other wizard. I also can only use the other Unforgivable Curses."
"So you can't just look at me, wave your hand, and I'd be under your control?" Harry asked.
"No. I have to pick up my wand and say Imperio. The only thing is, every other wizard has to really mean it when they use an Unforgivable Curse. I don't have to. So I have to be really careful," I said.
"So if you got mad and lost control…?" Harry asked.
"I'd be in big trouble," I answered for him. "And there's one other thing that I know for sure that I can't do. I can't make someone fall in love directly. I can only use the silly 'love potions', but that's not love. So that means I can't make someone fall out of love either. I can break a love potion's hold on somebody, though. I've never done it, but if I can use a love potion, I'm sure I can break it."
Harry nodded respectively. "That makes sense. Up until now, I thought you could really do anything you wanted."
"I suppose that's what everyone thinks… but it's not true. I have limitations and there's probably more that I don't know of," I said.
"Like you can't think something and have it happen? You have to move your hand, right?" Harry asked.
"Actually, I've been meaning to tell you about that. I haven't even noticed until recently, but I can," I said.
"You can what?"
"I can think something and have it happen. But it's not as simple as it sounds. I've got to concentrate and focus all my energy on it," I replied.
"You've mentioned that before. The stronger the spell, the more energy you need to execute it."
I nodded. "And if I use up all my energy, I could possibly faint. But it hasn't happened yet."
Harry grimaced. "I don't think I want to ever see that happen."
"Don't worry about it. I'll be careful," I smiled. It seems like Harry says this to me a lot, but now I'm the one saying it.
"Yeah, how many times have I said that, and you completely ignored it," Harry said.
"Hey, I didn't ignore it!" I said, chuckling at my own lie.
"Hello, children! What's the password?" The Fat Lady asked as we reached her painting.
"Fairy Lights," Harry said. The painting opened as The Fat Lady said, "Have a good night!"
I ignored how strangely joyous The Fat Lady was, and focused on Harry.
"Harry, you should get to bed."
"Wait, let's talk some more. I can wait; I'm not tired!" Harry said.
"Yes, you are! You've got to be after all that's happened today. I know I am."
"Then you should get to bed."
"You need the rest more than I do!"
"I think you do."
"Harry, please. You've got the last task coming up already and you haven't even recovered from today's. You. Need. The rest."
"It's okay, really."
"No, Harry! It's not! You need to sleep. I want you to sleep. I need you to go to sleep so I know that you'll be alert in the last task," I finally admitted after all the frustration. "I don't want you getting hurt because of a small mistake. I know you can win this, Harry, but you won't if you're not paying attention."
Harry smiled. "I knew I could get you to admit it."
My mouth dropped. "So… you were being obnoxious to get me to admit that I was worried?"
"Yeah, and I don't blame you for it. I would be just as worried."
He nodded. "But I wouldn't have admitted it that easily."
"You see, that's the difference between you and me," I said.
"I open up and show my feelings more than you do," I stated, as if it was a fact.
Smirking, Harry said, "How's this for showing my feelings?"
He closed his eyes and leaned in towards me. Getting the message, I closed my eyes, too. Soon, I felt his lips touch mine - our first kiss.
After saying goodnight, we departed for our dormitories. For the first time in a long time, I fell asleep happy.
Dear Uncle George,
It's been a while since my last letter to you, I know, and I'm sorry. So much has happened since then. When I last wrote to you, I was heartbroken. I want you to know that I feel much better now, for more than one reason. First, I got rid of everything he has ever given me and everything that reminds me of him. Second, I talked to living friends like you suggested. And I confronted Derrick. Do you know how long he was cheating on me? 6 MONTHS! And do you know why he didn't just break up with me? Because he liked the POPULARITY! He was using me! But, honestly, I'm just more angry than sad now. And I said I was heartbroken, past tense, because I talked to Harry. I feel so much better.
So, the second task of the tournament was yesterday. Harry and the other champions had to "recover", as McGonagall put it, something at the bottom of the Black Lake. They had an hour to do so. They had to recover people! And I was one of those people! I was Harry's to rescue. Cedric rescued his first, then Viktor Krum rescued Hermione. The Beauxbatons champion somehow got caught in some reeds and Harry rescued her little sister, as well as me, even though he didn't have to. An honorable act, right? Well apparently Dumbledore thought so, too, and rewarded Harry second place, even though he really came in last.
After the task, Harry and I were walking through the woods with Hagrid, Hermione, and Ron. Harry and I found the dead body of Barty Crouch. We don't know who murdered him yet. I was a little shaken up by it, but I didn't really know him. You weren't friends with him, were you? If so, I'm sorry.
Harry and I stumbled into Dumbledore's pensieve last night. We found out that Snape was a Death Eater! Did you know that? We also learned that Crouch has a son, Barty Crouch Jr. And he was convicted for being a Death Eater and put in Azkaban. Anyway, Harry's been having dreams with Crouch's son in it. He's escaped from Azkaban and he's working for Voldemort again. Harry says Voldemort ordered Crouch to get Harry and I. In his dreams… but is it really just a dream? That's what Harry's been wondering, and he asked Dumbledore, but he didn't give him a straight answer. I don't know what to think.
One more thing. Snape says that someone has been stealing from his herbal store and blames Harry. He said someone stole gilliweed, which is an herb our friend, Neville, gave to Harry for the second task two days ago. But he also said that someone stole the ingredients necessary to make Polyjuice Potion. He blames that on Harry, too, but I know Harry's got no reason to take those things. I don't know who's making Polyjuice Potion or for what, but I don't like it.
Well, that's all the news I have for you. I look forward to hearing back from you!
Love, XOXO, Chris
P.S. Thanks for that picture of mom. I'm still not sure why I remind you of her so much, but I like having a picture of her with me anyway.
I woke up that morning feeling groggy and tired. The first thing I did was write back to Uncle George because I had so much to tell him. I decided not to tell him about Harry and I because I wasn't sure he'd understand. I was afraid he would tell me that I shouldn't get too involved with him so soon after Derrick. But I'm sure about this. I'm ready.
"Are you ready, Harry?" Hermione asked.
"Of course," Harry answered.
"You better be! It's the last task and the most dangerous. You have to be ready. For anything," I said.
People were shuffling around us in a procession to the arena, where the last task will take place. Off in the distance, a trumpet blared.
"The champions are being called to the arena. Good luck, mate," Ron said.
"Harry, please be careful," Hermione said.
Hermione gave Harry a hug and Ron gave him a pat on the back. They turned and joined Neville and Parvati in the crowd.
"Save me a spot!" I called out to them.
"Okay!" Hermione called back. They disappeared into the crowd of students; Durmstrang boys, Beauxbatons girls, and Hogwarts students all going to the same place.
The maze task.
"Remember, if you get hurt, just use your wand to send a red flare. I can't help you, that'd be cheating. But Dumbledore or Moody or somebody will help," I reminded Harry.
"I know, I know. I can do this, okay? Have a little faith," Harry said.
I frowned. "I do have faith in you."
"Well, thanks, but it doesn't sound like it. 'Be careful, Harry'. 'Don't do anything stupid, Harry'. I'd like some support," he said frostily.
Nonplussed, I said, "Harry, you know I only say those things because -"
"Because you're so worried that you're overwrought, right?"
"Don't be. I can handle myself without your help!" Harry exclaimed.
"I have to go now. They're probably looking for me." Harry started to follow the crowd to the arena.
I stood still where he left me, dumbstruck. What just happened? At a loss of words, I watched Harry march off to the arena. Then, he stopped suddenly. He turned and walked back to me.
"What do you have to say now? Is there anything else you want to stab me in the back with?" I asked, my voice wavering uncontrollably. My nerves kicked in as I realized that this is why I was hesitating to believe Harry and I could ever feel about each other this way and make it work. This is what I feared. Harry and I are having our first real fight, and it doesn't sound like we'll be friends again.
Harry just stared at me gravely.
"Can you please explain what just happened?" I demanded, more than asked. "Can you say something?"
Harry's expression softened. "I'm so sorry. What was I thinking…?"
"I don't know, you tell me."
"I'm sorry, that was all an act. I knew you were nervous and worried for me. I thought maybe if you were mad at me, you wouldn't be so overwrought," Harry explained.
"You faked being mad at me so I wouldn't be worried? How could you think that would work? I would still be worried no matter how distracted I would be about our fight."
"It was stupid, I know, but just know I'm not really mad at you and I was thinking of you when I did it."
I smiled, despite what just happened. "You're right. It was stupid. And I can't really believe I'm saying this, but I forgive you. I can kind of see why you did it… kind of, being the key words here."
Harry breathed a sigh of relief. "Good."
The trumpet blared again.
"Oh, I really do have to go now," said Harry.
"Right. Good luck, Harry. I'll be watching in the stands," I assured him, smiling encouragingly. I pulled him into an embrace and we kissed goodbye.
After Harry disappeared, I took a moment to think to myself. What if Harry wasn't really faking it? What if that whole argument had just happened, but for real? Oh God, I don't know what I'd do. Oh well, I'm really glad it wasn't real. Harry's plan to get me mad was a weird one, but it was for a good reason. Hopefully he learned his lesson. But, hey, I'm his first girlfriend! Who can blame him?
With that thought in mind, I dismissed Harry's weird plan as a sincerely thoughtful one that will not happen again. Hopefully, I should add. It's not like Derrick did anything like that. In fact, I can't think of anything thoughtful he did.
I chuckled to myself, glad that Derrick was no longer a part of my life, but then thought how strange I must look to other people, because nobody completely sane laughs to themselves, right? I retreated from my own thoughts and looked around to make sure nobody was staring at me.
I saw trees, bushes, the school off in the distance, an animal rustling around in the underbrush. But no other people. The sun set as I realized I was alone. Everybody had already left. How long was I standing here?
Never mind. Hermione and Ron are probably waiting.
I turned my head abruptly towards where the sound came from. It could just be the animal in the underbrush, stepping on a twig. I shook my head and wished my nerves would calm.
I started towards the arena.
Now I'm really getting paranoid. That could still be the animal… or the flick of a wand.
I stopped and stared at a bush that seemed to be moving. I felt my wand in my pocket quiver violently. That means danger.
For some reason, I pushed the idea of danger away and decided that I should find out what's in that bush. As I came near, the bush stopped moving… but I spotted something on the ground beside it.
Overwhelmed with curiosity, I bent down to get a closer look.
A vial of swirling liquid rested by the bush. It's iridescent purple color was so mesmerizing, I couldn't help but be drawn to it. The uncapped vial let out a distinct fruity smell. Mmmm. Delicious. Every thought that came to mind was about how strange the whole situation was and that I should just turn and run, right now. But those thoughts were overshadowed by another, darker thought: I should drink it.
The whole thing was very Alice-in-Wonderland-esque, like when Alice finds the cake. She has no idea what it is, but she eats it. Wonderland. That's good, right? This liquid must be good then, too. Good enough to drink. And I'm so thirsty. It's perfect timing. Someone's looking out for me, then. They must be my friend. My friend wants me to drink the purple liquid. That means I should if my friend wants me to. I like purple. I like my new friend.
My tongue felt so dry suddenly. The desire to drink from the vial took over. Soon, I was drinking it like I hadn't had something to drink in days. I shouldn't be drinking this. This is bad, this is really bad. But I can't stop.
Don't stop. I like this drink. It tastes like every yummy fruit I can think of. Grapes. Strawberries. Bananas. Apples. Raspberries. All flavors blended together to create the most delicious juice in the universe.
All these conflicting emotions! I can't take all of them at once! Why did I drink this? Am I under the influence of a… of a… oh, never mind. I can't remember the word.
Glass. I dropped the glass vial. The glass vial filled with purple liquid. Yummy, fruity, delicious goodness in a vial. The best drink I've ever tasted…
I just want to sleep…
My friend wants me to.
The friend that gave me the purple drink. I want to sleep now.
Why not? I'm so tired… Don't you feel that? My arms and legs feel so heavy.
Don't! Something really bad is going on! I don't know what. But if I fall asleep, someone could hurt me.
Like who? My friend is looking out for me. It's okay to sleep. My eyelids are closing…
Keep them open! How do I get myself out of this? There's something… this something can help me… What is it?
I don't know…
How do I use it? I can't move my fingers… my wand… I can feel it. Where is it?
Just sleep, it'll all be okay in the morning.
Maybe. I am a little tired. More than a little. I could sleep right now.
"She's out," said a voice.
"Perfect," said another. "And about time, too. How well was that spell you cast? It seems like she was fighting it."
"Well, my Lord said he doesn't want her brain-dead."
"So it was a little weak."
The second voice paused. "Whatever. Help me sit her up."
"One moment, my leg is caught in the bush!"
"Oh, for Merlin's sake…"
"Okay. Where should we put her?"
"Prop her up against that tree. Do you think she hit her head hard when she fell? He wants her alive."
"Should be okay."
The second voice sighed. "I'm going to trust your instincts on that one."
"What should we do now?"
"Well, the champions have already entered the maze. That means I need to help you with the girl and then get back to maze so that nobody questions where I was."
"Should I take her to the graveyard now, then?"
"Okay… well," the first voice hesitated. "Bye."
And he was gone.
The second voice sighed again.
Can't be gone long, it may raise suspicions. And I have to be there to make sure Potter gets to that Portkey.
He turned and took a swig of his Polyjuice Potion while he walked back to the maze.
"WHEN will he be here?" a shrill voice demanded.
"A few minutes, my Lord!" another voice answered.
I've heard that voice before. Who does it belong to? Where was I when I heard it?
"And the girl?" the shrill voice asked.
"Tied up in that chair, my Lord," the familiar voice answered.
"Take me to her."
"Yes, my Lord."
Agh, where did that horrible headache come from?
"Chrislynn Godrick. The Girl Who Lived," the shrill voice preened. That's me, isn't it? "I've finally caught her. And this time I'll make sure she doesn't get away."
Uh oh. That doesn't sound good.
"Look how she's grown. Very pretty. Just like her mother was. It's too bad that woman was useless. But her daughter will be very useful to me, once she's back to normal."
"Yes, my Lord. She won't get away this time."
I could practically hear them smiling evilly. Oh, why can't I open my eyes and see who these people are?
"Bring me closer to her," the shrill voice commanded.
The pain from my headache increased. I felt an ice cold hand grab my wrist and turn it over harshly. My brain sent the message to jerk my arm away, but the message somehow didn't finish its journey and my arm stayed still.
"Such soft skin," the shrill voice cooed. "And deep blue veins. There's the blood that'll flow through my body soon enough."
What does he mean by that?
"Imagine a Dark Mark on her forearm right here, Pettigrew."
Pettigrew? Is that his name?
"What a sight that would be, my Lord."
The shrill voice cackled. He suddenly dropped my arm and cried, "Pettigrew! Her hand twitched. How long was that spell supposed to work?"
"Er, I've got something over here, my Lord. Look - it's a potion, but it has the same affect as the spell."
"Give it to her. Quickly! But not too much. I want her to understand what's happening but not be able to do anything about it. Understand?"
"Yes, my Lord. A small sip will do."
I felt a glass touch my lip and then tip so that a warm liquid slowly poured from it.
"You didn't open her mouth, you twat!" the shrill voice yelled.
The liquid trailed down the sides of my face. I can taste the liquid that still lingers on my lips. Mmm. I willed my mouth to open a tiny bit to welcome it. The glass was pressed to my lip again and the warm liquid successfully poured into my mouth.
"There. Shall I take her outside now, my Lord?" somebody asked. What was his name?
"Yes. Put me down in my chair and bring her by my father's grave. But leave the grave for the boy."
"Yes, my Lord."
"And tie her arms and legs together in case that potion doesn't work."
The pain from my headache lessened, but only by a little. I felt warmer hands lift me up and cradle me against their chest. The aftertaste of the potion suddenly hit me. Such a sweet taste…
The hands let go and dropped me. Then my hands were being pulled together and held tightly against each other by a rough rope. My legs were pulled together by the ankles and the same rope tied tightly around them.
"Er… one more," said the familiar voice.
The person took another rope and painfully tied my stomach to the back of the seat. Then the voice murmured something and the ropes tightened even more.
"That should do it," the voice said nervously. As if to answer him, I heard myself groan. "The boy should be arriving soon…" the voice trailed off.
What boy? Arriving here? Where is here, anyway?
I heard footsteps scurrying and then fading away. Sounds like the voice left. Deciding it was a good time to look around, I tried to open my eyes. Again, my brain sent the message, but it got lost along the way. Why do my ears work and my eyes don't?
Please, eyes, work! I've got to see where I am! I've got to see if I'm in any danger! Open!
Slowly but surely, my eyes opened, simply because I willed them too.
Interesting. I willed them to open, so they did.
My vision started off blurry, but cleared once I moved my eyes back and forth and my eyes adjusted. A few words came to mind as I looked around at my surroundings.
Dark. Cemetary. Graves. Creepy.
Giant Black Cauldron.
I don't want to know what that'll be used for. I shouldn't stick around to find out. My first reflex was to jump up and run, but the only movement was the twitching of my feet.
Come on! I've got to get out of here!
I will you to work, muscles!
My legs jerked and my feet twitched, but any more movement than that below my neck seemed impossible. Oh, that's right! I'm tied up!
The voice had pulled my arms behind the seat and tied them tightly. My legs were crossed together by the ankles, and they were tied as well.
Now how will I get out of here?
I sighed a deep, hopeless sigh. Ouch. My stomach!
I looked down to see a rope tied around my stomach three times.
I groaned. Did he have to tie me this tightly?
This is it, then. There's no way out. I don't know what my kidnappers are going to do with me, but I know I'm not leaving unscathed, that is, if I'm leaving at all. Maybe they'll kill me quick and it'll be over. But what about the people I'll be leaving behind? What'll happen to them? They'll be unprotected and my kidnappers could hurt them, too!
Uncle George. Poor Uncle George! Will he be able to protect himself?
And my friends from school…
Hermione! Ron! Parvati! Ginny! Neville!
"Argh… are you okay?" said one voice.
"Yeah… are you?" said another.
"Yeah. Where are we?" the first voice asked.
Who's that now? I didn't hear these voices before. Wait a minute, they sound a little familiar…
"I feel… like I've been here… before." the second voice said slowly.
"The cup must be a Portkey…" the first voice thought out loud. "Harry, the cup is a Portkey!" it said louder.
Harry! The first voice is Harry! I want to scream his name, tell him to get out of here… but I would be risking his life, too, if my captors heard.
"Cedric, I saw this place in a dream," Harry said.
Cedric, too! No, no, no, Cedric's innocent! Completely innocent!
"We have to get back to the cup!" Harry said urgently.
Yes, run! Get back to the Portkey, back to safety! I'll save myself, somehow, Harry, JUST LEAVE. I wish I could warn him! He's too far away and I can't yell too loud!
"What are you talking about?" Cedric asked, his voice getting louder and closer.
Shhh, Cedric! Listen to Harry and get out of here! The frustration made my eyes fill with tears.
Then, Cedric walked into view.
"What are you doing here?" he asked me. Before I had a chance to reply, he looked down and realized that I was tied up. "Oh my god, are you - ? Who did this?" he asked.
I opened my mouth to say something, but couldn't put the words together. The tears spilled over. More frustration, more tears.
"Who is it?" I heard Harry ask.
Harry walked into view beside Cedric. His eyes widened.
"Chris! How did you get here? Are you tied up?" Harry asked.
"She looks weak," Cedric commented.
I nodded helplessly. They both ran over to my gravestone/seat and tried desperately to untie me.
I shook my head. "Stop," I managed to blurt out. I found the ability to speak! "Leave. Get back to the Portkey!"
Cedric stopped trying to untie me, but Harry kept trying.
"Harry, the ropes are heavily charmed. It's no use," Cedric said.
"No use," I repeated through tears.
"Cedric, get back to the cup," Harry said authoritatively.
"You're not coming?"
"I'm not leaving her," Harry answered.
I began to protest, but Harry ignored it and asked, "Who did this?"
"I… I'm not sure," I said. Realizing I could put better sentences together, I kept going, "Harry, they put me under a spell. They got me to drink something. I don't know what it was, I just know it tasted good! Everything's coming back to me! After you left, they kidnapped me! The drink knocked me out. The spell weakened me. I completely forgot about magic until now! But, mine doesn't work. My magic, I mean. I can't do anything! It'll wear off, though. I can get myself out of here eventually. Just go somewhere safe!"
After I stopped rambling, Harry just stood there, soaking it all in. He looked angrier than ever. Then, he turned to Cedric.
"Get back to the cup," he ordered.
"Go with him!" I exclaimed.
"NO!" Harry said, louder than he should have. We all froze.
"Hurry!" I whispered. "They probably heard that!"
"Sounds like he's here, my Lord!" I heard from inside a nearby mausoleum. Then, my captors approached the clearing and exited the mausoleum.
"Wormtail!" Harry whispered.
I recognized the first one as soon as Harry said his name. Wormtail. The traitor who betrayed Harry's parents and posed as Ron's rat, Scabbers. Wormtail was holding something small wrapped in a blanket. Is that…
"My Lord, it is Potter. And he's brought a friend," Wormtail laughed.
Harry tensed and stood protectively by my side. Cedric drew his wand. I whimpered, hopeless. If only my magic was working.
A tiny, shriveled hand rose from the blanket and pointed towards Cedric as my scar and Harry's scar burned. The same shrill voice from earlier said, "Kill the spare."
Wormtail quickly drew his wand and said, "Avada Kedavra!" A zap of red Dark Magic hit Cedric right in the chest…
"Cedric!" Harry yelled.
…and he fell to ground dead.
More tears escaped in waterfalls.
Harry began to draw his wand, but Wormtail acted faster. He raised his hand and a magical force picked Harry up off the ground, and pushed him towards a taller grave to the left of me. The Grim Reaper on the gravestone came to life and trapped Harry behind his giant sythe.
"Do it now!" the shrill voice in the blanket said.
Wormtail dropped what he was holding into the cauldron. The water started bubbling and boiling furiously. I can tell just how dark this magic is.
I glanced over at Harry. He watched Wormtail and struggled to get out of the trap at the same time. Dirt from his crash landing was covering his cheeks and chin and his glasses were askew.
"Bones of the father, unwillingly given," Wormtail said. He used his wand to raise a bone from the grave whose tombstone Harry was trapped on. The bone hovered through mid-air and dropped into the cauldron.
"Flesh of the servant, willingly sacrificed," Wormtail said. He took a knife and held his arm above the cauldron. He slashed his arm with one, quick movement and his hand and wrist dropped into the cauldron.
I flinched. His arm now ended halfway through his forearm.
"Blood of the enemy, forcibly taken," Wormtail continued. He took the knife and walked over to Harry and cut his wrist.
"Argh!" Harry cried out in pain.
I turned my head so I wouldn't have to see the pain written all over his face.
Then, Wormtail moved closer to me. I turned my head and braced myself to feel pain, but all I heard was a cackle.
"I'm not taking blood from you, Godrick. There's been a change in plans. Just the boy's blood. My Lord has decided that your blood is too precious to spill." Wormtail cackled again.
I breathed a sigh of relief, but felt guilty that I didn't share Harry's pain.
Wormtail brought the knife over the cauldron and let a drop of blood fall into the cauldron.
"The Dark Lord shall rise again!" Wormtail exclaimed, smiling evilly.
Now I know what's going on. That thing in the blanket was Lord Voldemort, a.k.a the Dark Lord. How didn't I see this before? That bone was from his father, Tom Riddle. That's whose gravestone Harry is on. We're in a graveyard in Little Hangleton.
Harry and I have front row seats to Voldemort's resurrection.
The massive, black cauldron burst into flames before my eyes. Wormtail took a step back and gazed in awe at the spectacle before him. Something rose out of the cauldron as the flames reduced to a smolder. Engulfed in inky, black smoke, Voldemort began to morph into a human sized body. As Voldemort descended to the ground, the smoke from the magic fire wrapped around his naked body and formed a robe, as black as his soul.
Like a baby, Voldemort carefully took his first steps, relishing the feeling of using his own feet again. He examined his hands, turning them over and over, and then felt his face with them, as if he was making sure it was really true. He was really in human (or human-like) form.
He slowly opened his eyes, taking in the familiar scenery of his parents' graveyard in Little Hangleton. When I stared into his eyes, I expected them to be scary, like red and devilish. But as I looked closer, they were not red, but a light blue. Almost white, almost blending in with his sclera, the white of his eye. He took in his first deep breath with his new body. My eyes instantly flew up to his nose. As soon as I saw it, I knew he was no human. His nose - if I can call it that - is extremely flat. So flat, that it's just two slits above his mouth and underneath his eyes. It reminds me of a snake.
I shuddered. He can't be human. He hasn't got a soul. Someone with a soul would not just kill an innocent person like Cedric. Someone with a soul would not resemble a snake. Someone with a soul would not kidnap his only two survivors. Someone with a soul would not even have killed anyone in the first place.
Voldemort, with his new body, found a new sense of authority. He stood tall and said, "Wormtail," with his new voice, he commanded, "give me my wand."
"Of course, My Lord." Wormtail bowed and handed him a wand. The wand, the brother of Harry's wand, looked pale and bony, just like it's user.
"Hold out your arm," Voldemort commanded again.
"Oh, thank you, Master!" Wormtail said excitedly, holding out his severed arm, expecting Voldemort to fix it for him. Stupid Wormtail.
"Your other arm," Voldemort said, impatient.
Wormtail quickly put his severed arm down and held up the other arm, looking a little disappointed because he thought he had finally earned Voldemort's appreciation.
Voldemort pushed up Wormtail's sleeve to reveal the Dark Mark tattoo that all of Voldemort's most loyal Death Eaters had. Uncle George would have had one, if he had made it to Voldemort's inner circle. Anyway, when Wormtail felt that press of the wand on his forearm, all of the other Death Eaters with Dark Marks felt it, too, and Apparated to this very spot in an instant. I looked up into the sky and saw the Dark Mark form in the gray clouds. I glanced at Harry and saw him staring into the sky, too, with a look of recognition. This isn't the first time we've seen this. This appeared in the sky at the Quidditch World Cup. We saw it right when we found Harry.
"Welcome my friends," Voldemort began, speaking to his followers, "It's been thirteen years since we saw each other last. And not one of you tried to find me. Disappointing."
I noticed some of the Death Eaters, covered in masks and robes, bowed their heads in shame. Others just stood there, listening intently to Voldemort's welcoming speech. All of them, though, were brought to full attention when Voldemort went around, unmasking each of them. As he unmasked them, he named them, as if to bring them shame if they weren't shameful already. Among the names, I heard "Crabbe" and "Goyle". I won't be surprised if he names -
"Lucious Malfoy! Not even you," Voldemort said as he unmasked the last person.
The white-blond hair, the playful eyes but sinister smile… it's all just like Draco. The apple doesn't fall too far from the tree, I guess. I glanced over at Harry. He's thinking the same thing, no doubt.
"Had I seen any signs… heard any whispers!" Lucious responded.
"There were signs and definitely whispers. More than whispers," Voldemort said.
"I returned!" Wormtail interrupted.
"Out of fear, not loyalty," Voldemort said, which shut Wormtail up, "but, you have proved yourself useful these past few months."
Wormtail smiled. Voldemort grabbed Wormtail's severed arm and made him a new one out of pure magic. I watched in wonder. That's the kind of power I have in me. But I can do it without a wand, I bet.
"Thank you, my Lord!" Wormtail said.
Voldemort then noticed Cedric's corpse, lying beside him.
"Oh, such a handsome boy," Voldemort said. He raised a dirty, disgusting foot and prodded Cedric's face with it.
"Don't do that!" I yelled. Furious and filled with disgust for this soulless being before me, I forced myself to look angry and not scared at all.
Voldemort put his foot down, turned to me and I watched as a grin spread slowly across his face, growing wider and wider.
Harry looked at me, more afraid than I had ever seen him. That's when I began to get scared, too.
"Aw," Voldemort mocked, "you don't like it when I touch the dead boy's body? You think I should just leave it to rest in peace?"
Mustering up all my courage, I said, "He is not an it. He's Cedric Diggory. An innocent boy. That you killed."
"Oh, but I didn't, sweetheart. I had Wormtail do it," Voldemort said slowly, like I was stupid or something.
When I didn't respond, he kept going. "So you must be very tough, standing up to me like that," Voldemort mocked even more. "But your power is nothing but a product of my own mistake. Your power is mine, recycled."
"My power is not just yours. It's better. It's stronger," I said. I watched him get angrier and watched his followers look at me in awe. "So why not just kill me now? Eliminate the threat."
What am I saying?
"That's a good idea. But I can't," Voldemort said, putting his best pokerface on.
Why not? I wondered. Wait, Uncle George said he had an old sorceress counteract the curse Voldemort put on him, so I wouldn't be harmed.
"Oh, that's right," I said, with confidence that it was my turn to mock. "My Uncle found a way out. A loophole. The curse was counteracted. You can't harm me."
Voldemort still had his pokerface on. "Is that what your uncle told you? He counteracted the curse?"
"Not him. He found a sorceress. She did it."
"A sorceress? What was her name?" Voldemort asked, his pokerface on, but his eyes smiling.
"Umm," I thought back. "He didn't say."
"Oh!" Voldemort faked surprise. "He didn't!"
Voldemort turned to his followers, which is when I noticed that they weren't looking in awe anymore. They were trying not to laugh.
Then Voldemort began to laugh, and it was like a cue card to the Death Eaters, who started laughing hysterically also. Voldemort's laugh, a black seed, blossomed into a black flower, the whole graveyard seemed to be filled with laughter. I felt my face get red and hot. Why were they laughing? So he didn't tell me the sorceress' name… is that so funny?
Voldemort stopped laughing, the black seed destroyed, the black flower no longer existed and Voldemort spoke through the emptiness, "The curse can't be counteracted. Your uncle lied to you." Voldemort put his pokerface back on while he watched for my response.
I couldn't respond. I didn't know how to. I had no comeback, no witty remark, no words of bravery. He lied to me. No sorceress. No counteraction of the curse. No safety. Voldemort can harm me. And here I am, defenseless.
I'm afraid. Truly afraid. For my own life, not just Harry's.
"Look at you. Now you're finally feeling real fear. The kind of fear where you know you could die tonight, and probably will," he came closer as he said this. He could feel the fear eminating from me. He lives off of the fear.
But he's right. I could die. And probably will.
Now we're face-to-face. My heart beat rapidly and my lungs took in short breaths. He drank in the fear, could hear my heat beating so fast, hear my short breaths. And then, like he read my mind, he said, "I'm not going to kill you."
I held my breath, waiting for him to say "Just kidding!" or "Yeah, right. Like I'm letting you go free." But he didn't.
Instead he said, "Really."
I exhaled, and slowly took in another breath and let it go. It's okay. I'm not going to die tonight.
"Of course, I could kill you, if I wanted to. But I don't. You're too valuable to me," he said with a smile.
I put a "What?" expression on my face.
"It's true. Remember what I said before? That your power is mine, but recycled? And you said that your power is better? You were right. You've got something special in you," Voldemort said, his voice softer, more inviting. "I could use someone as special as you."
I imagined myself as a Death Eater, always under Voldemort's control because I was too afraid to stand up to him. Too afraid to do anything.
Voldemort said, "You're more than just a pretty face, Chrislyn." With that, he reached out his hand and gently held my chin, turning my face from one side to the other, examining my "pretty face". I sat still, letting him turn my face, letting him control me because I was still stuck in that vision of me being a Death Eater.
Voldemort stopped examining my face and casually brushed my bangs out of my face. Then he took out a finger and swept it across my forehead. Such a small gesture. But yet I didn't like it. It made me uneasy. But I couldn't pull away. He swept his finger across my forehead over and over.
Then I realized what's on my forehead. My scar. He's attempting to touch it. Without alarming me. I know what he's doing, but I can't pull away. I can't do anything.
But apparently Harry can.
"Don't you TOUCH her!" Harry yelled, as loudly as I had at Voldemort when he touched Cedric's body.
Everything stopped. Voldemort stopped sweeping his finger across my forehead. The Death Eaters stopped watching him and looked at Harry. I stopped acting stuck in my vision.
Voldemort turned to Harry. And suddenly everything sprang back into action.
Voldemort jumped up and away from me, but towards Harry. The Death Eaters looked alive and flanked Voldemort. And I looked at Harry, giving him a Why-did-you-do-that! Look.
"Oh, Harry!" Voldemort lit up with fake excitement. "I almost forgot you were here! And then you finally spoke up in her defense! So chivalrous!"
Then a light bulb formed above Voldemort's head, figuratively of course. He said, "Oh, I see. There's something going on between you two."
When neither of us responded, he dropped the subject, obviously not really interested in our personal affairs. So he moved on to Harry.
"So, Harry," he began, "how does it feel to be standing on the bones of my father? You knew you were on his grave, right? Well I suspect you did know something about him. You're as famous as he was nowadays. Am I right? The Boy Who Lived…"
I watched Harry listen intently, as if he was waiting for Voldemort to say something spiteful. But Voldemort just paused, turned to me, and added, "…and his Girl Who Lived."
The words themselves were not hateful, but the way he spoke them made them so. And it got to Harry. That much was written all over his face. Voldemort can see that Harry and I are more than friends now. That can't be good.
Then, for some reason, he turned back to Harry and acted as if he hadn't said that. "So let's talk about what happened the night you earned your scar, shall we, Potter?"
Uh oh. Touchy subject.
"How did I lose my magic?" Voldemort asked rhetorically. "It was love. When your mother gave her life for you, she used a kind of magic that I hadn't seen. Her love protected you like no other magic could. I couldn't touch you. But things are different now. Yes, now I can do this!"
Voldemort came face-to-face with Harry and took out a finger, just like he had done with me, and slowly brought it to Harry's forehead. With me, he had tried to mask the fact that he was trying to touch my scar and it didn't hurt one bit. But with Harry, he didn't waste any time. He pressed his finger directly on to Harry's scar.
Harry screamed. His scream pierced my eardrums and I could feel his pain somewhere inside myself. Literally. It's my forehead. My scar! My scar is hurting because Voldemort touched Harry's! I bit my tongue and forced myself not to scream.
"STOP!" I yelled instead.
The Death Eaters, confused, turned to me, then Harry, then me again. Voldemort slowly turned away from Harry and back to me. He looked closely at me, trying to analyze my expression. I masked my pain with a look of worry.
"Stop?" Voldemort finally repeated. "What's wrong? Can't stand to see me hurt your beloved?"
Again, he implied that he knows about Harry and I. But I don't care as long as he doesn't know that he can hurt me through Harry. He could use that information against us.
He chuckled to himself and turned back to Harry. I braced myself for more pain in case he touched Harry's scar again. Instead, he drew out his wand. Oh no.
"Just look what a few drops of your blood can do," Voldemort said, talking about the pain touching Harry's scar brought, like my outburst didn't happen. "Pick up your wand."
He released Harry from the grim reaper's hold. Harry fell to the ground; his glasses flew off along the way. As he fumbled around for his glasses, on hands and knees, Voldemort said, "Pick it up, I said! Get up, get up! You've been taught to duel, correct?"
Harry found his glasses and his wand, which had been thrown across the graveyard earlier. He stood up slowly and cautiously looked over at me.
What kind of look do I give him? A You-Can-Do-It Look? That would be lying, because I am not so sure that he can. A Give-Up Look? That'd wouldn't be very motivational. A pokerface? I don't know if I can do that. I'm scared out of my mind. Not reaching a decision, I just went with what was real. I imagine my expression was a mixture of Scared-to-Death, Worry, and How-Am-I-Going-To-Get-Us-Out-Of-This?
Harry decided against looking to me for a silent pep talk and faced his opponent.
"First we bow to each other." Voldemort said and bowed politely, like any duel they teach in Hogwarts. Harry, being defiant and stubborn, didn't bow. I don't blame him. Who wants to bow to Voldemort?
"I said BOW!" Voldemort said angrily. With magic, Voldemort literally forced Harry to bow. Harry struggled against it, but it's magic. You can't beat it.
Voldemort smirked, lifted his wand and exclaimed, "Crucio!"
Harry doubled over, writhing in pain.
I hate Voldemort. I hate him for killing Cedric, for bringing Harry here, for casting the Cruciatus Curse on him, for cursing my family, for causing Uncle George to fear magic itself, and for my parents' deaths. I hate him with all my heart. But simply hating him will do nothing. I will get out of this and I will get my revenge someday. First, I need to focus on the present.
Voldemort's looking down on Harry who is still wriggling and squirming on the ground. I turned my head away from the scene. Will he ever stop torturing Harry?
Voldemort fixed his gaze to me. "I don't want you to miss this," he said to me. He raised his wand and my head jerked involuntarily so that I was looking at Harry again.
"What do I mean by this, you ask?" Voldemort said, still talking to me. "Well, let me tell you my plans for tonight. First, I will duel with your precious Harry, which will result in a dead Boy Who Lived and a triumphant Dark Lord. With him gone, I will have nothing standing in my way in the path to complete control. I just need you. You will help me, won't you? Oh, of course you will, because you will have no choice. With Potter dead, the rest of your friends too scared to move a muscle, and your uncle locked up in Azkaban where he sent me so long ago - did I forget to mention that part? So sorry. Anyway, you will have no reason to not help me. You might act defiant at first, but soon you'll come to learn that you'll have no reason to live, therefore no reason to fight. You try anything funny, and your uncle will be dead before you can apologize. That's my plan. Isn't it grand?"
No, it is not grand! There's no way I'm going to sit here and watch Harry die.
"Oh and don't even think about trying to stop me from killing him tonight because you literally can't!" Voldemort added. "Wormtail has found a spectacular trick! You're my first test subject! And it's working splendidly! You can't use your magic, can you? That's right, you can't, because that spell completely wiped out your natural ability to use magic. Temporarily, of course. What use would you be to me if you couldn't use magic? None."
My heart sunk as I realized that he was right. I'm powerless. What use am I to anybody without magic? None. Like Voldemort said. None. I might as well be a Squib. Actually, I would rather be a Squib than be Voldemort's slave for the rest of my life. I would rather be a Squib than see Harry dead and Uncle George in Azkaban. What a horrible future I have ahead of me. And I can't do anything to change it.
"Get up, boy," Voldemort commanded, grabbing Harry by the shirt and pulling him up. Harry stood on his feet and quickly made a move toward me, turning his back to Voldemort. No, Harry, bad decision!
"Forget the girl, there's no way you can help her now," Voldemort commanded. Harry ignored him. His face, covered in grime, looked even more determined.
I gave him a He's-Right Look. Harry stopped and his expression was less determined and a little more scared.
"Turn around. I want to see your face when I kill you. I want to watch the light leave your eyes," Voldemort said.
A dark shadow crossed Harry's face and the determination appeared again, but this time mixed with rage. Now he must be thinking exactly what I was thinking before. I will get out of this and I will get revenge someday.
Harry bravely turned around to face his opponent and took a step forward.
"Have it your way," Harry said, his tone suggesting something along the lines of, I'm back in the game and ready to play. A chill ran down my spine at the sound of his voice. The last time I heard him speak was when he stuck up for me. His tone now was different. Determination, bravery. All business.
Then two things happened at once:
Voldemort raised his wand and yelled "Avada Kedavra!"
Harry raised his wand, brother to his opponent's wand, and yelled, "Expelliarmus!"
Their wands released streams of magic; Voldemort's wand releasing red, Harry's wand releasing light blue. I held my breath, waiting for the red magic to overpower the light blue and Harry to drop dead. Instead, the red and light blue met in the middle, both equally bright and setting off sparks. Neither streams of magic faltered. Harry had his back to me so I couldn't see his face, but Voldemort looked like the magic was putting a lot of strain on him.
I've never seen something like this. Duels are usually so fast paced. A few spells from each person, and then suddenly one has an advantage over the other… and then the professor declares the winner. This is completely different. Both people chose their spell quickly; Voldemort went for the big finish and Harry played defense. But instead of one person casting their spell before the other, both cast at the same time. And the two spells touched. Hogwarts didn't prepare Harry and I for this.
As if that wasn't amazing enough, the magical energy coming from Harry's and Voldemort's wands shivered. Shadowy forms pulled themselves free from the streams of magic. Three of them floated to Harry and changed shape. Upon closer inspection, I could see that one of the shadows looked exactly like Cedric! But I just saw Cedric die! His corpse is right over there to prove it!
The other two shadows floated on either side of Harry. They're definitely human or projections of humans… but who are they? Their backs are to me, too. I can only tell that one of them is a woman because of her shape and her hair and the other is most likely a man.
Then one of them - the woman - turned around. Her empty eyes bore into mine. At that moment, I heard a feminine voice inside my head.
I am Lily Potter, it said.
Yes, I am Harry's mother. I know who you are, too.
You're talking to me?
I don't have time to explain. James and I are here to help Harry.
Ah, so the man is Harry's father. How are you helping Harry?
We're going to break the connection.
You will only have a short amount of time to get out of here. We can't stall him for long.
Don't worry about Harry right now. James and I will break the connection, you will be free, and Harry will take you to the portkey.
I will be free? How am I supposed to get out of this? Does Harry know this?
James is filling him in. Just focus on yourself right now.
Lily turned back around abruptly, finishing our conversation. After she turned, I realized how short our conversation really was. Nothing new happened. Lily never moved her lips and neither did I.
"Harry!" Cedric's… spirit… spoke out loud. "Harry, take my body back to my father!"
That's when Voldemort realized what was happening and began to exert more force.
Two more shadows pulled free from the magical energy, changed shape and floated to either side of me.
My heart just about near exploded.
The spirit on my left is my father. Wearing the same clothes the last time I saw him. His facial hair as unshaven as it was the night he died.
"Dad…" I whispered, unable to speak at a higher decibel.
Shh. Don't let him hear.
If the one on my left is my father, then the one on my right is… my mother. It took me longer to realize that she looked exactly like she did the night she died because I barely saw her that day.
"Mom…" I whispered, breaking out into a sob.
It's okay, Chrislyn. You'll be okay.
Mom, I've missed you!
And we, you, darling, my dad telepathically said.
Mom! Dad! Harry's mom said that they're going to help Harry and I will be free?
Yes. We'll all break the connection, giving Harry enough time to let go and take you and Cedric's body to the portkey, my mom said.
But I can't move! These ropes are impossible to undo!
Don't worry, we'll help with that. Just keep quiet, my dad said.
Will I be able to use my magic again?
Of course. That spell is no match for you, lovely, my mom said.
Will I see either of you again?
There's no way of knowing.
I cried even more because they didn't give me the answer I wanted.
Are you ready? We're going to untie you. You need to run over to Cedric's body, okay? Harry will meet you there. It's important that you don't go anywhere else.
Their two voices merged into one as their forms changed into a ball of energy and combined with each other. The combined ball of energy stretched over my feet, my arms and my stomach where the ropes tied me down. A second later, the ropes loosened and vanished.
Remembering the instructions my parents gave me, I stood up cautiously. The feeling slowly came back to my legs. Ugh. I'd been sitting there for a while. Clutching my stomach, I ran-stumbled over to Cedric's body.
I looked over to the spirits, Voldemort and Harry. Voldemort was still struggling to overpower Harry. Harry looked back and forth from my parents' ball of energy to his parents, still in human form, and to Cedric's spirit. Cedric, Lily and James nodded to him. Harry seemed conflicted.
Why isn't he letting go?
Then I heard one universal voice echoing in my mind, like all five spirits combined into one.
Let go, Harry.
The look on Harry's face told me that he heard it, too. He's still not letting go!
You're ready, Harry! they said.
Cedric, Lily and James changed into balls of energy and combined with my parents. They're ready to break the connection.
Voldemort noticed the giant ball of energy, full of magic. If Harry doesn't let go now, Voldemort's going to try to thwart our plan somehow.
"Harry!" I yelled.
His head quickly turned to me. He no longer looked conflicted.
I nodded in reassurance. It's now or never.
Harry's grip on his wand slackened.
The spirits, all victims of Voldemort together as one soul, took Harry's place as Harry finally let go and ran… thankfully, alive.
I didn't see what else happened with the spirits because I was focused on Harry and our escape. He ran over and knelt down beside me. Relieved that Harry was here and we were about to leave, I let go of my weight and let myself lean into Harry. I winced as he wrapped his arm around my waist. Then I grabbed Cedric's hand so he would leave with us.
"Accio portkey!" Harry said.
The Triwizard Cup flew right into Harry's hand.
And we were out of there.
The first thing I realized when we got back was this:
I'm holding a dead person's hand. A little freaked out, I quickly dropped it and then scolded myself for disrespecting Cedric's body.
The next thing I realized:
The arena erupted into applause and cheers. Everyone in the stands was so excited to see a winner after so much waiting, they stood up and smiled proudly and hugged each other. They saw me but it didn't register anywhere in their brains that I was never supposed to be here. Maybe I was some kind of extra task within the maze. There she is, the damsel in distress, guarded by a sphinx. Save her, get the Triwizard Cup, and you're golden. They also don't even see that the person lying on the ground isn't resting - he's dead.
The third thing:
Dumbledore, Moody and Mr. Diggory were there. They all reacted differently. Dumbledore clapped slowly, but then saw Cedric and I and stopped. Moody backed away from us and everyone else, retreating into the shadows. Mr. Diggory's eyes immediately went to his son. He tried to make sense of what he saw.
All of these things I realized while I came to my senses.
The whole, dramatic scene in the graveyard, taking place miles and miles away, was over in just a second. As soon as I thought Harry was going to die… salvation found us. And we're safe again. So I did all that was left.
I let go of every feeling, every single emotion I felt during Voldemort's show. Hopelessness, Fear, Misery, Defeat, Despair… Love. All of it leaked as I leaned over Cedric's body, held his head up and cried as I hugged him.
"I'm so, so sorry," I sobbed. "I couldn't do anything for you, Cedric! I let you die! I let you die right in front of me!"
I felt a shaky hand touch my back. I turned around to see Harry, tears creating tracks down his grimy face.
Everything Harry went through back there struck me just then. I mean, the reality of it all. He pulled me from my entranced state with his words. He heard Voldemort explain his master plan that included his death and my capture. He looked death straight in the eye and fought it. He got us out of there. With some help, yes, but he allowed the spirits to break the connection and called the portkey to us.
I've never seen him sobbing like this. I've never seen him really crying. The farthest I've seen his tears go were the rims of his eyes… and then they seem to disappear. But now, right before me, Harry is letting his emotions out like I did. The other time I've seen him show his feelings was when he made the move to kiss me for the first time.
I feel like I should hug him, but I don't think even a Chris-hug is enough. Thankfully, Harry did something this time.
He buried his head in my shoulder and just cried, like I'd done so many times with him. I held him close and cried along with him.
"He's dead! He killed him!" Harry sobbed. "I didn't do anything either!"
"I know, Harry, I know," I murmured and kissed his head.
I was crying silently now, trying to be the shoulder to cry on, trying to repay Harry for all those times he'd been there for me.
"My son!" Mr. Diggory wailed. He rushed over to Cedric's body and held it to him, but not before he gave us a strange look - like he didn't know whether or not we had something to do with Cedric's death. I looked away in shame, glad that Harry didn't see it.
Dumbledore rushed over to us behind Mr. Diggory with Fudge by his side.
"Tell me what happened!" Dumbledore ordered. He looked to both Harry and I, not sure who would answer.
Still crying, I managed to start explaining, "I was kidnapped - earlier. They took me to… Little Hangleton. Harry and Cedric - they arrived with the Triwizard Cup. It's a portkey. We were… we saw…"
Harry composed himself enough to speak and said, "He's back! Voldemort's back! And he killed Cedric! I couldn't leave his body there!"
Dumbledore looked to me to explain more, but all I could do was shake my head and start crying again.
"You're safe now. Both of you," Dumbledore said.
Everyone in the stands are panicking now. They realize that Cedric is dead. That something is wrong. Something is definitely wrong. Voldemort is back, ready to terrorize the wizard world until he gets what he wants.
"A boy has just been killed," Fudge announced.
Close friends of Cedric broke out into sobs, including Cho. Other students tried to get a closer look. Those students became confused fast. Because what would Chris Godrick, the Girl Who Lived, be doing in the Triwizard Tournament's last task? She's not in the tournament. Was there an extra challenge within the maze to save her? Can't be, they would've said something.
They're right. I'm not supposed to be here. Nothing is how it's supposed to be right now. I should be with Hermione and Ron somewhere in the stands, watching as Harry left the maze carrying the Triwizard Cup, triumphant.
But who would have that normal, happy and carefree life? Not me.
Fudge ordered everyone to stay seated.
Who can stay seated? I can, because I was already on the ground. Getting up, that's the problem.
Fudge ordered someone to take Cedric's body away. Mr. Diggory didn't let anyone touch his son. He carried him himself.
I'm so sorry you had to get killed, Cedric. You shouldn't have been involved in it at all. But Voldemort shows no mercy, whether you're innocent or not.
Moody came forward from the shadows. I forgot he was there.
He motioned for Harry to get up and follow him. Harry wiped his eyes, composed himself, and complied. Before following Moody, Harry looked back at me and outstretched his hand. Of course I grabbed it. I'll be sticking close to Harry a lot more from now on. No one's safe alone.
He pulled me to my feet gently and kept his hand in mine. He walked a beat faster than me so that he was positioned in front of me protectively. I held onto him tightly as if my life and his depended on it. Maybe it does, I don't know anymore.
Moody led us to his dark dungeon of an office.
Once we were inside the darkened room, Moody shut the giant door behind us and locked it. Harry and I have calmed down a bit, but I'm not sure either of us can think straight. The last time we were here, I was on high alert. Now I'm not on any alert. My mind is still in Little Hangelton, bending over Cedric's dead body, sobbing, with the image of a dead Harry and a locked up Uncle George blocking any form of reality from entering.
It's like I never really recovered from my entranced state back in the graveyard. Well, I just sure hope Harry's got any wits about him. That'd make one of us.
Moody set up an area for all of us to rest. He needed to rest because of his prosthetic leg and we needed to rest because, well, we didn't exactly just come from a walk in the park or something.
There were two chairs across from each other, placed in front of a big chest in the corner of the room and next to a fireplace. He pulled over a stool and put it next to one of the chairs.
Then he sat down in the lone chair and barked, "Take a seat."
Harry led me over to the chair and sat on the stool by my side.
"Are you two alright?" Moody asked us.
Harry and I nodded.
Moody turned to Harry and spoke to him specifically, "Does it hurt?"
I hadn't noticed before, but Harry had been holding his arm since he sat down. Now when Moody asked about it, he let go and brought it away from him. Seeing it for the first time, I gasped. Wormtail had left a bloody gash that vaguely looked like the shape of a skull and a snake.
And my only injury is a bruised stomach.
"Oh my gosh, Harry. That looks really bad!" I exclaimed.
Before I suggested going to the infirmarary, Moody asked, "Does it hurt?"
"Not so much anymore," Harry answered.
"I'll take a look at it," Moody grabbed his arm and inspected his wound. He seemed to be strangely stroking it rather than 'taking a look at it'.
"The cup… was a portkey," Harry began explaining.
Moody didn't take his attention away from the wound. I didn't take my attention off of Moody. Harry looked at the floor, reliving the nightmare.
Moody suddenly released Harry's arm and looked at me, as if he just remembered something. He grabbed my arm, turned it over, and was surprised to find nothing.
"Where's yours?" Moody asked me.
"My what?" I responded.
"He should have - I mean, shouldn't you have a cut there, too? Why did he leave you alone and hurt Potter?" Moody asked, still surprised.
"I - I don't know… I was wondering that myself. Worm - Peter Pettigrew said he was going to, but decided that my blood was 'too precious to spill'." I answered.
Moody's face fell for some reason and he dropped my arm.
"Well, that's good then." Moody said, his voice soft.
Then he asked, "What was he like?" more angrily.
"Who?" Harry asked.
"The Dark Lord," Moody said. "What was he like after he was resurrected?"
Why on earth is he curious about that? I mean, I guess he would like to know because being resurrected isn't a normal, everyday thing. I've never seen it before tonight and I know Harry hasn't either. Moody must be interested in the resurrection part - right?
"Well, it was like one of my nightmares, but I never woke up." Harry answered.
Then something really weird happened. Moody started gasping for air like somebody had their hands around his neck, squeezing. But nobody was doing that. He reached for a bottle fastened to his belt and tried to take a drink from it, but it was empty. He began shaking uncontrollably and jumped up out of his seat.
I pulled Harry closer to me. Because he had been staring at the floor, he noticed what was happening with Moody for the first time when I grabbed his good arm.
Moody hobbled over to a cabinet a few feet away and pulled out bottle after bottle, but they were mostly empty. He found one finally and managed to take in only a small drop.
He composed himself and turned back to us.
"Were there others? In the graveyard?" he asked.
I thought about what he was asking and pictured the graveyard in my head. Harry and I on gravestones; Wormtail a little ways away, looking on; Voldemort positioned in front of Harry, moving closer and closer; and then the Death Eaters, watching the scene unfold.
I almost answered 'Yes, the Death Eaters', but Harry beat me to it:
"Er, I don't remember either of us saying anything about a graveyard, Professor."
He's right. Neither of us did. And come to think of it, neither of us said anything about resurrection. Harry had just said he was 'back'. That could mean anything. And he had expected me to have a gash identical to Harry's!
Moody laughed. "You haven't figured it out?"
"Remember when dear old Hagrid brought you to see the dragons that night? So you would know what the first task was about? I told him about it." Moody began.
"Remember when sweet Cedric Diggory told you how to hear the egg's message? So you would know what the second task was about? I told him how." Moody said.
I don't like where this is going.
"Remember when the oh-so-intelligent Neville Longbottom gave you gilliweed? So you could actually do the second task? I gave him the book that led him to it!" Moody finished.
Oh my goodness.
Harry said, "It was you! You put my name in the goblet! You bewitched Krum! You're -"
"Yes! I'm the reason you're here! If you hadn't known about the first task, you would've failed. If you hadn't known about the second, you would've failed. If you hadn't had the gilliweed, you would've failed. If that meathead Krum wasn't bewitched, he or Fleur could have won. I. Got. You. To that. Graveyard!"
"I knew it! I knew there was something not right about you. I never liked you!" I said.
"Yes, I knew you didn't like me. But I didn't need to gain your trust. The only thing I needed to do with you was get you to the graveyard. That part was easy." Moody responded.
"You're one of my kidnappers!" I exclaimed.
"Ha! You figure that one out on your own?" Moody said sarcastically.
"How did you do it?" I exclaimed. "I've never heard of a potion that takes away your magic!"
"It didn't! It simply made you so loopy, you didn't know how to use your magic! Clever, right?"
"You take advantage of everyone's trust. Harry's, Cedric's - Dumbledore's! You make me sick." I exclaimed, my voice getting louder and angrier.
"We succeeded in something," Moody said, ignoring me. He grabbed Harry's bad arm and exclaimed, "This blood flows through the Dark Lord's veins!"
Harry pulled his arm away. Moody grabbed mine instead.
"I told him. I said that the blood of the both of you together will be his greatest advantage! Who knows what power, what greatness it would bring him! But he obviously didn't agree, because here you are - unscathed! Yes, your blood is precious, which is exactly why it should be flowing through his veins as well!" Moody said.
He dropped my arm and began to reach for something else fastened to his belt. Harry and I jumped out of our seats and slowly backed away.
"No matter! Just think of how the Dark Lord will reward me," said Moody dreamily. "When I kill the boy and capture the girl because he failed to do so himself!
Just as Moody pulled a wand from his belt and Harry and I had backed up into the corner behind the big chest with Harry in front of me protectively, the padlocked door flew open with a burst of magic. The magic propelled Moody into the wall when Dumbledore, Snape and McGonagall ran inside.
Harry and I are saved for the second time tonight.
Dumbledore rushed forward to Moody and held him up by the neck.
"Severus!" said Dumbledore.
Snape came forward and held up a flask I recognized from the night Harry and I ran into Snape. Veritaserum. Dumbledore held open Moody's mouth while Snape carefully poured some of the veritaserum into his mouth.
Ah. Now Moody will spill his secrets. But… Harry and I already heard what he did.
"Um, Professor?" they all turned to me. "That's not really necessary. He confessed everything to Harry and I. We know what he did."
They all turned back to Moody. "Shh," Snape dismissed me with a wave of his hand.
"Do you know who I am?" Dumbledore asked Moody.
"Yes." Moody said. He kind of gurgled when he spoke. A side effect of veritaserum?
Dumbledore's eyes darted to the bottles in the cabinet Moody had been searching through earlier, then back to Moody for his next question.
"Are you Alastor Moody?" he asked.
Even more odd. Does veritaserum cause memory loss or something?
"No." Moody gurgled.
What? A huge twist in the plot!
"Where is he!" Dumbledore yelled. "Is he here in this room!"
'Moody' nodded and looked over at Harry and I.
Woah. I know I am not Alastor Moody and neither is Harry.
"Not us!" Harry said.
"No! The chest! Get away from it!" Dumbledore ordered.
Harry reacted first, pulling me away with him. We stood beside Professor McGonagall. Dumbledore went over to chest, leaving Snape with 'Moody', and tapped it with his wand. The chest unlocked and opened, revealing a series of chests within each other. Dumbledore leaned over the opening and peered in. He raised his eyebrows, but didn't seem very surprised at what he saw inside. He waved McGonagall over, who looked in with the same expression. Harry and I couldn't help but follow and see for ourselves.
Alastor "Mad-Eye" Moody, the real one, I think, was slumped against the wall deep inside the pit of the chest.
"Alastor?" Dumbeldore called. "Are you all right?"
He groaned and replied, "Sorry, Albus."
So Alastor "Mad-Eye" Moody is not a traitor. Or at least, the real one isn't. My suspicions were right about the fake one, though. Poor real Moody was locked up in this chest the whole time while his duplicate went around wreaking havoc on Hogwarts. Well, not really. He just almost destroyed Harry and I's lives. That's all. So, does the real Moody have an evil twin? Or has the fake one been drinking Polyjuice Potion all year instead of alcohol like I thought?
Harry seemed to be asking himself the same type of questions because he then asked out loud, "If this is Moody, then who is… ?"
In answer, Dumbledore held up the bottle fake Moody had and Snape said, "Polyjuice Potion."
"Now we know who's been stealing from your store, Severus," said Dumbledore.
Ha! Snape had thought that we were stealing from his store!
Dumbledore called into the pit, "We'll get you in a minute, Alastor! We've got to handle something first."
Dumbledore walked over to fake Moody and said, "Now just who are you?"
The fake Moody began to shake and tremble violently. His skin loosened, his face was literally falling… the Polyjuice Potion is wearing off. Snape and Dumbledore stepped back to wait for his real identity to show.
His skin tone became darker, his facial features younger and sharper. His eyes changed color and his nose grew a little bigger. His hair turned brown and shrunk into its roots. His mouth became smaller and crueler. His clothes looked looser on him, like he shed some pounds. When the transformation was finished, he flicked his tongue across his lips.
I recognize this man! Not because of his short, unruly hair. Not because of his dark eyes. I recognize his smile - almost a smirk - and that thing he did with his tongue.
I gasped. "Barty Crouch Junior!"
After Dumbledore, Snape and McGonagall had seen for themselves that the traitor was indeed Barty Crouch Junior, they had Fudge take him back to the Ministry, which is where they will decide what his fate is. Hopefully he falls victim to the Dementor's kiss instead of being granted the generous life time sentence in Azkaban. He doesn't deserve it.
Sirius hadn't even expected Barty Crouch Jr. to make an appearance, let alone destroy our lives as we know it. Nobody did. I had my suspicions, but they were on the wrong man. Well, they were on the wrong identity of the right man... I think. Anyway, he was the key and I can finally open a series of locks to uncover what this year was all about.
Moody, from the beginning, was not Moody. He is Barty Crouch Junior. He wasn't drinking rum or whiskey or Pumpkin Juice... he was drinking Polyjuice Potion everyday to keep his disguise. Once Dumbledore introduced the Triwizard Tournament, he wrote Harry's name on a piece of paper and put in the Goblet of Fire, starting his master plan. When debating on what to do about Harry, "Moody" said that only someone very powerful - more powerful than your average young wizard - could have fooled the age line. By doing this, even Dumbledore instantly thought of me - which completely pushed under the rug the idea that someone older could have set him up.
Being a professor gave him access to the dragons, or at least knowing that they were there. So he told Hagrid, who told Ron, who told Hermione to tell Harry. Then, he gave Harry somewhat of a game plan to make sure he passed the first task.
Harry made it out of the first task alive with the egg, which would almost guarantee success at the second task. Harry didn't have the first clue what to do with the egg, so "Moody" gave him a clue. Or he gave Cedric a clue who passed it on to Harry. Meanwhile, "Moody" has given Neville Longbottom a book on plants. Neville read it, of course, because he's the most interested in botany. After Harry heard the egg's message, we got to work trying to decipher what it actually meant. While Ron, Hermione and I were in McGonagall's office, "Moody" had Neville help Harry put books away. It was really so that Neville would mention that the book that "Moody" gave him had a solution to his problem. With the help of gilliweed, the plant that Neville learned about from the book, Harry passed the second task.
And finally, the third task. First of all, "Moody" had already done all he could to get Harry to this point in the tournament. Without him, Harry would've been lost and maybe disqualified or killed before the third task. He only had one more thing to do. He had to get me to the graveyard.
After Harry left me, I became lost in my own thoughts and drifted along slowly until I realized that I was suddenly alone. Before I could get to the task, I heard something in the bushes. That was probably either "Moody" or Pettigrew. I dismissed it as an animal in the brush, but then I heard something else. A zap. Similiar to the sound a wand makes when it casts a spell. That was Pettigrew, casting a spell on me. The spell caused me to become a complete ditz at first. Either "Moody" or Pettigrew then placed a vial of sweet-smelling potion. The spell caused me to forget my natural instincts not to do anything stupid and/or dangerous, and I gladly took a drink from the vial. The magic of the spell and the potion combined caused me to forget about my magic. The potion made me sleepy, and since my natural instincts were nonexistant, I succumbed. This allowed Pettigrew to take me to the graveyard. "Moody" returned to the maze.
Pettigrew brought me to the mausoleum in the graveyard, where Voldemort was waiting. Pettigrew prepared for the resurrection and then brought me outside to a grave. He transformed the grave into a seat and then put me in it, tying me to it tightly with enchanted ropes. He tied my ankles together, my wrists together behind the seat, and my stomach around the seat (which still hurts). I was still confused about everything. I didn't even know how to open my eyes or form sentences at first, let alone use my magic. My first few minutes in that graveyard were spent trying to get back to my senses.
Meanwhile, Harry and Cedric were in the maze, and reached the Triwizard Cup. They decided they would grab the cup at the same time, so they would both win fairly. Unfortunately, "Moody" had made the cup a portkey that brought them to the graveyard in Little Hangelton. He meant it to take Harry to the graveyard, so that Harry and I would be at the graveyard to watch the resurrection, but Cedric was taken along for the ride because he and Harry wanted to be fair. What a cruel, cruel world. Anyway, they arrived and I only got to explain a little bit before Pettigrew heard them. Voldemort ordered Pettigrew to kill Cedric. He called him 'the spare'. How disgusting is that? Cedric was a person, not a spare.
Pettigrew went through with the ceremony. He sacrificed his own arm and took a bone from Voldemort's father's grave. Then, he cut Harry's wrist, taking some of the blood and dropping it into the cauldron. I thought that he was going to cut my wrist as well, but he said Voldemort decided my blood was 'too precious to spill'. I felt so guilty! I still feel guilty. Harry was cut, tortured, and almost killed. I escaped unscathed.
Back to the ceremony. All of these 'ingredients' were put in the cauldron. And thus, the new Voldemort was born. He talked to his Death Eaters, or scolded them for not helping him, and then touched Cedric's corpse with his dirty foot. I spoke up in Cedric's defense, which started a conversation that I never want to relive ever again. I found out a few things and I think so did Voldemort. Voldemort found out that Harry and I have something between us and he found out that he can touch our scars. I found out that there was no sorceress and Uncle George had lied to me. I also found out what real fear is like. Harry and I learned what Voldemort's master plan is. The main points? Harry: dead. Uncle George: in Azkaban. Me: captured.
That was supposed to start tonight at the graveyard with Harry's death. But his plan backfired for now, at least. All thanks to the five spirits: Cedric, Lily Potter, James Potter, and my parents. They saved us. And I don't know if they'll ever be able to save us again. Seeing all of them right in front of me was... it was mind blowing. There's no other way to describe it. I watched Cedric die and then a few minutes later he was speaking to Harry. Lily was as beautiful as I hear she was. Everything about her was motherly as well; she still protected Harry with her life and love after death. I didn't get to see James' face, but I imagine he looks like Harry. And then my father appeared at my left! To see him looking exactly the way he was before he left to meet his death was heartbreaking. My mother, at my right, made me realize how much I missed her more than I missed my father. Of course I've missed them both dearly, but I hadn't seen my mother much that day. I didn't get to see her before she died. Well, no matter, maybe I'll find myself in some other life-threatening situation and see them all again. Who knows.
Anyway, the spirits saved us, and Harry and I left alive and whole, with Cedric's body. Once people realized something was wrong, "Moody" pulled us out of there and took us to his office. There, he tried to get us to talk about what happened in the graveyard at first. He slipped a couple of times and unintentionally made it sound like he knew more than he should. He confessed once Harry pointed it out. After his confession, he made a move to try to do what Voldemort failed to. But we were saved once again.
"Are you... okay?" Harry asked.
I looked at him solemly.
"Let me rephrase that. Are you hurt?" he asked from the bed in the infirmary. We stopped here so Madam Pomfrey could take care of his wound. She's already cleaned it and put a bandage to help stop the bleeding, but we're still here on Madam Pomfrey's request. She says he's lost a lot of blood and she would like him to eat something and rest a little before we leave for the dormitories. Dumbledore called the rest of the students into the Great Hall for a meeting, but excused us so we could rest.
"No. But you are," I answered. I still feel horrible that I got away without any wounds and Harry suffered.
He sighed. "Stop beating yourself up about it."
"But I can't stand the fact that I suffered no pain but you did. I can't stand watching you in pain when I can't share it," I said.
Harry didn't respond. I know that he knows he would feel the same if he were in my position. His silence gave me free time to think. The only thing I can think about is watching Wormtail slash Harry's wrist, Voldemort torturing Harry with the Cruciatus Curse, and Harry and Voldemort battling it out, with me waiting helplessly. Oh, and I forgot when Voldemort touched Harry's scar and Harry screamed out in pain...
And my scar hurt, too.
"Wait. Maybe... we did share some pain," I said.
Harry, perplexed, said, "What?"
"Remember when Voldemort touched your scar?"
"How could I forget."
"My scar hurt, too. Right when he touched yours!"
"But... mine didn't hurt when he touched yours," Harry said.
"Yeah, neither did mine!" I said.
"What do you mean?" Harry asked.
"He didn't directly touch it, remember? He was brushing his finger back and forth."
"Yeah, I didn't like that." Harry said.
"But don't you see? When either of us feels any pain brought to our scars, the other feels it, too!" I exclaimed.
"Why are you excited about that?"
"I - I don't know, I think it's because it makes me feel like we're... connected." I tried to explain.
"We already were, in a way," Harry said.
"The only thing is, we can't let Voldemort know this. He could use it against us," I said.
Harry nodded. We let this idea linger in the silence that followed.
What would happen if Voldemort tried to kill Harry, pointing his wand at Harry's scar, and casting the Killing Curse? Would I die, too? If it is so, and Voldemort found out, maybe he wouldn't kill Harry because he needs me alive.
On the other hand, Voldemort must never know because if Voldemort somehow gets a hold of me and hurts my scar... Harry might try to rescue me and fall into a trap. Or the other way around.
Harry broke the silence. "I can't stop imagining what Voldemort would do to you if I was dead."
"Don't think about it. And don't worry about what could happen in the future. Worry about staying alive, okay? That's what matters to me most right now," I said.
"Believe me, if my being alive means your safety, then it's my top priority," Harry said.
"Good. I promise you, one day, Voldemort will be killed and you'll be the one to do it. I'm going to do everything in my power to help you. 'Till the end." I said.
Harry smiled. "Thanks. That's better to imagine."
"Of course." I smiled back.
I wanted to add on an 'I love you' to the end of that, but I'm not sure it's time yet. I don't know when, but I want to make sure it feels right before I say it.
Harry, still smiling, said, "It was amazing to see my parents tonight. Wasn't it amazing?"
"Truly amazing. Words can't describe it." I said.
"Do you think we'll ever see them again?" Harry asked hopefully.
To quote my mother, I said, "There's no way of knowing."
His face fell.
Yeah, I was disappointed when I heard it, too, I thought.
Wanting to change the subject, I said, "I talked to your mother."
"You did?" his face lit up again. "Good. I'm glad she got to meet you."
"I'm glad, too," I said. "I think I would like her."
"I don't know much about her, but something tells me she would like you, too."
I smiled, but it soon faded away because what he said got me thinking. Even though I feel as if I know my parents like any normal person should, I really don't. I was very young when they died. The only thing I know for sure is that they would sacrifice themselves for their loved ones, as would I. And I only know that because it's how they died. Harry and I never got to have a real conversation with either of our parents, except for tonight. Our time with them was so short... I wish I could sit down with them and just talk.
Harry, taking his turn to change the subject, said, "Is your magic okay?"
"What?" I asked, venturing away from my thoughts.
"I mean, you can use your magic now, right?" Harry asked.
"Oh, um. Yes. I tested it earlier. It's fine," I said. On the way to the infirmary, I levitated a statue to try it out. I also gave myself super hearing and heard Harry's heartbeat, I made a bracelet appear on my wrist, I changed the color of the tips of my hair, I did anything I could think of to make sure I was no longer powerless. I never want to feel like that again.
"I still don't understand it... how could you lose your magic?" Harry asked.
"Mood - I mean, Barty Crouch Jr. said the potion I took made me so loopy, I just didn't know how to use my magic, remember?" I said.
"Oh yeah. It just doesn't make sense to me. You, of all people, couldn't use your magic!" he said.
"I know. Right when I needed it most, it finally failed me. What bothers me the most is that the potion probably wore off long ago and I didn't even know it. I might've been able to get us out of there sooner. And maybe Cedric wouldn't be dead." I said, getting teary-eyed.
"But you didn't know that it wore off then, if it did," Harry said.
I ignored him. "It's my fault he's dead!" I said, the tears falling freely now.
"No it's not. It's Voldemort's," Harry said, taking my hand and holding it in his. "Neither of us could have reacted fast enough anyway."
"But - "
"Stop. Just listen to me, okay?" Harry said, brushing a tear away from my cheek. "I feel miserable about it, too, but I'm trying to just be thankful that you're here, safe and alive. You should be, too."
I looked away shamefully. I know's he's right. I should be happy that we're here and that Voldemort and Moody didn't succeed. I wiped away my tears and took a few seconds to compose myself.
I smiled at Harry and said, "I am happy. Happy that you're alive."
"And that you're alive," Harry added.
"I would be alive either way. Voldemort's as eager to keep me alive as you are," I said.
"But not for a good reason," Harry said, getting a little angry. "He wants you alive to use you for your power. I want to keep you alive because I - "
He paused and carefully chose his next words.
" - care about you." he finished.
"I care about you, too." I said.
He was debating what I was before. He was about to say that he loves me, but feels it's too soon. I'm glad we're on the same page.
I kissed him and asked, "Are you ready to go?"
He said yes, and so we left the infirmary together and rushed together to the dormitories before the crowd left the Great Hall. Have I mentioned we're together?
I went to sleep thinking of Harry. Not Cedric, or Voldemort, or Pettigrew, or my parents, or anyone else. Just my Harry. He became protective today when I said that Voldemort wants me alive as much as he does. It reminded me of the nineteen year old Harry in my dream. He called me his princess. I wonder what Harry would say if I told him? Nah.
It'll be my little secret.
"So that is when you and Harry escaped?" Dumbledore asked.
"Yes. I held Cedric's hand while Harry held on to me and grabbed the Portkey with his other hand," I explained.
He called Harry and I into his office one at a time to relate our stories to him completely.
"Well, you two are very lucky. If Priori Incantatem hadn't occured, you would not be here." Dumbledore said.
"Priori Incantatem?" I asked, not knowing what the foreign phrase meant.
"It is when two spells connect, so to speak, so that neither of the spells casted took effect. Did you notice that the magic energy from the two wands met in the middle?"
"Yes. Harry's was blue and Voldemort's was red. That's how I kept track of who was getting weaker," I said.
"Ah, that's smart of you. Anyway, they met in the middle at a bead. You couldn't see it because it's usually too small, but it was there. Thankfully, Harry had enough willpower to push the bead to Voldemort's wand. He's a very strong boy."
I smiled. That's my Harry.
"So when the bead touched Voldemort's wand, the past spells that had been cast from his wand began spilling out. Since his last spells caused the deaths of Mr. Diggory, your parents, and Harry's parents, their ghostly spirits appeared. From what you describe, it sounds like they were able to immerse themselves into the energy and the effect shocked Voldemort so much, that it gave you enough time to get away." Dumbledore explained.
Priori Incantatem is how I got to see my parents. Priori Incantatem is how I'll ever get to see my parents again.
"So, is this a rare occurence?" I asked.
"Yes. And even if it does happen again, there's no guaranteeing that Harry or whoever is on the other end will be strong enough to will the bead to the opponent's wand."
I sighed. So there's a small chance I'll see them again after last night.
"You were hoping you might get to see them again, weren't you?" Dumbledore asked.
I nodded. "Seeing them last night was amazing. For Harry, too."
"Sounds like it."
An awkward silence followed, which left me to think about questions I might have for Dumbledore.
"Headmaster? In the graveyard last night, Voldemort told me something... and I'm not sure whether or not to believe him..." I began.
"What was it?" he asked.
"Well, he said that Uncle George lied to me when he said he had a sorceress counteract the curse for me. He said that it's impossible for the curse to be counteracted."
"Chrislynn," he began, using my full first name, but I always let it slide with him. "I'm going to give it to you straight. I don't think Voldemort was lying to you. I believe it's more likely that your uncle lied to you."
"What?" I said, shocked. How could that be more likely? My poor, sweet uncle?
"Think about it. Your uncle's biggest goal is to keep you safe, right?"
"Yes! That's why he would get a sorceress to help me!" I exclaimed.
"But the thing is, I don't think it's possible to counteract," said Dumbledore.
"Why not? It's magic, anything is possible! Just look at me! I'm fourteen and I'm one of the greatest witches around!" I said.
"But something so... so definite, so precise... it just can't be cast away with something so simple. I'm sorry, Chrislynn."
"Why would Uncle George lie to me, though?"
"To protect you. Not physically, but mentally. He didn't want you to live in fear."
"But if I thought that I was... invincible, I could have gotten myself killed!" I exclaimed.
"I'm not going to criticize your Uncle's judgement, but I believe he did what he thought was right. What matters is, you know now. And you won't get yourself killed," said Dumbledore.
I paused. He does have a point. I've been fine so far, so I can't complain.
"You're right." I said.
"You're going to have to be strong, Chrislynn. Be the Girl Who Lived. Don't fear the future; take control of it. I know you and Harry will both be safe as long as you have each other. Be strong for Harry as he will be strong for you."
"I will, sir. I promise," I said.
"Good," Dumbledore said. "Now, is there anything else you'd like to ask me?"
"Actually, yes. One more thing?"
"Of course. What is it?"
"Can you tell me the history of my last name?" I asked.
"Ah," Dumbledore chuckled. "Godrick. I understand your curiosity. I was curious myself. So I did some research."
"I suppose your biggest question is if you are related to Godric Gryffindor?" asked Dumbledore.
"Well, I'm sorry to say, you are not. The similarity between your surname and his first name is just a coincidence."
I frowned. "That's disappointing."
"Yes. It would've been astounding if you were. But nonetheless, you're ancestry does date back to a rather amazing person. I traced your ancestry back to medieval times, about 600 years after Merlin died."
"Wow. That far?"
He nodded. "You're distant ancestor was a princess from Wilde Island named Rosalind Pendragon."
"Where is that?"
"It's an island off the coast of England. No one's lived there for over 200 years. Well, no humans anyway," Dumledore said.
"What do you mean? What lives there then?" I asked.
"Dragons," he said. At my astonished expression he said, "You'll understand why when I'm finished telling you about Rosalind. Anyway, before Rosalind was born, her mother, Queen Gweneth, learned of Merlin's prophecy about the 21st queen of Wilde Island. The 21st queen was prophesized to do three things: redeem the name Pendragon, end the war with the wave of her hand, and restore the glory of Wilde Island. She knew she was going to give birth to the prophesized queen, so she tried to make sure her pregnancy and her child's destined future would go smoothly. The problem was, Gweneth was having trouble concieveing, so she resorted to trusting a witch. Keep in mind, witches back then were selfish, pompous and not trustworthy. The witch gave her some kind of mixture to drink from and I'm not quite sure, but I think either one of the ingredients had to do with a dragon or she drank from a dragon's egg. The point is, her obsession clouded her judgement and her child, Rosalind, was born with a dragon's claw instead of a ring finger."
"Yes, the poor child. Rosalind came in touch with the dragon inside of her when she was carried off by a dragon so that she could nanny the baby dragons. Rosalind began to understand the dragon's side of the ongoing war between humans and dragons and therefore established a new state of mind... maybe some dragons aren't all that bad. Eventually, she fulfilled Merlin's prophecy, learning a bit of her own magic along the way."
"She was a witch?"
"A witch of her own kind."
"What does that mean?"
"Well, aren't you like a witch of your own kind?" Dumbledore asked.
I've never thought of it that way. It sounds pretty cool, though.
"I - I guess. I mean, I've always known that I'm different from others, but a witch of my own kind? Uncle George never told me that one." I said.
"He probably hasn't thought of it like that, either."
"So... how am I related to a Pendragon?" I asked.
"Ah, yes. I was getting to that. Rosalind found her happy ending by marrying a man who overlooked her differences and loved her for who she was. Ironically, he was a dragonslayer! Ha! His surname was Godrick. That's how you are related." Dumbledore explained.
"How romantic! The dragonslayer married the witch-princess with the dragon claw!" I laughed.
This, again, reminded me of my dream in which Harry called me princess. And I'm related to one! Did my subconscious know that before I did?
"So, wait, I'm royalty then?" I asked.
Dumbledore chuckled. "Sorry, Chrislynn but you are not. The monarchy died off of that island when the humans did. Only dragons inhabit it now."
"What? Did the dragons eat them?" I gasped.
"No! They were wiped out by either the war between England and Spain or a plague."
"Oh," I sighed, relieved. Then I thought of something else, "But wait! Did her children have dragon claws, too?"
"No. Since their father was 100% human, so were they... technically. Some said that the family had an unusual fascination of dragons. That was passed on from generation to generation along with the new magic as well," Dumbledore said with a smile.
"It's true!" I exclaimed.
"The unusual fascination of dragons! Those dragons you brought in for the first task of the Triwizard Tournament were beautiful. They were majestic creatures... and when I expressed this to Uncle George, he didn't understand why I liked them so much. Or he claimed to..., " I said.
"Maybe that's part of shutting out the old George. He stays away from magic and dragons and nobody gets hurt. He was only hiding that part to keep you safe," said Dumbledore.
"I still wish he had told me," I said. I know I sound a little childish, but if he had told me sooner I would'nt have been so clueless about who I really am all these years. I've always known that I'm different from others, but never really understood why. I only knew what people said about me. That I'm more powerful than any witch of my time. Now that I know about Princess Rosalind, I finally understand that my power was passed down from generation to generation. To everyone else, I'm different. In my family's history, I'm normal. I'm lucky to be accepted for being different.
"Well, that's understandable, Chrislynn. I suppose you feel better now, though?"
"Yes. Thank you, sir," I said.
"Now may I ask you a question?" Dumbledore asked.
"Were my eyes decieving me or have I seen you and Harry holding hands recently?"
I blushed. Soon the whole school will know about Harry and I!
"You're eyes would be correct," I said. "We've only been dating for less than a week. A few days, really."
"You know, it's actually perfect timing. You and Harry need each other now more than ever. And now you two have a deeper emotional connection! I couldn't be happier for you!" Dumbledore said.
Grinning, I said, "Thanks, professor."
"Well, I think now is a good time to call Harry in. Before you leave, I just want to remind you of what I said earlier. Be strong. It's not enough to have the power; you have to have the right mindset, too. Understand?"
"Don't get too confidant, though. You're not invincible." Dumbledore warned.
"Believe me, I know." I said.
"Keep your friends close."
"Harry will support you as long as you support him."
"I'll always support him."
"Keep your priorities straight."
"Good answers." Dumbledore said, smiling. He waved his wand, opening the door.
I guess that's my dismissal.
"Tell Harry to come in on your way out, please, Chrislynn," he said.
"Thank you," I said as I exited.
Harry was looking out the window, his expression thoughtful, when I left Dumbledore's office. He turned to me and his face lit up as soon as he saw me.
"It's your turn," I said, gesturing for him to enter the office.
He gave me a quick kiss before walking in. I waited until the door closed to take Harry's position at the window. The first thing that came to mind was the promise I made to myself last night in the graveyard.
I will get out of this and I will get revenge.
Well, now I'm out of it, so the only part of it I still have to keep is the revenge part. I owe it to everyone I love to keep it, as well as myself.
Friday, June 17th. The last day of an eventful year at Hogwarts.
Let's take a look at just how eventful, shall we?
Event 1: Harry enters the Triwizard Tournament. How did this affect me, you ask? Well, now that I look back, I think it brought out my true feelings for Harry. Cheesy, right? It's as cheesy as much as it's true. Could there be any other reason why I cried so much for him? I thought, then, that it was because I loved him like a best friend and feared for his safety. Turns out, I love him much more than that. And I think I have since Harry was forced to enter the tournament.
Event 2: I catch Derrick cheating on me. If your asking how this affected me, then you're an idiot. This affected me in two different ways. Three, now that I think about it. One: I was heartbroken. I loved Derrick. But not like I love Harry. I think it's different with Harry because we're best friends first, a couple second. Two: My "shell" is broken. Now you must be saying, "Oh, that metaphor again? Don't be so dramatic." Yes, I know. I was being a bit dramatic. I really did feel that way though. That my brave act was faltering. But you know what? I've had an epiphany. No more brave act! I am not an actress. Dumbledore told me that I have to be strong, so that's what I'm gonna be. Down to the core. And if my "shell" really is broken, then I know Harry will help me pick up the pieces and rebuild it. Or maybe I'll decide to throw out the pieces and forget it ever happened. Like I said, no more acting! It'll be just like in the graveyard last night, when Harry looked to me to give him encouragement so that he'd be able to be strong enough to face Voldemort. But the thing was, I couldn't encourage him because I was scared out of my mind. So instead of putting on a brave face, I went with what was real. That's what I'll do from now on. And finally... Three: Yet another event that brought me closer to Harry. It's just like Myrtle said: "You're slowly drifting away from Derrick and towards Harry". She was right. The fact that Derrick cheated on me only brought me completely away from Derrick and into Harry's arms.
Event 3: Voldemort's resurrection. Harry's near-death experience. My kidnapping. Cedric's death. All rolled into one night in one graveyard. Instead of explaining how every one of them affected me individually, I'm just going to sum it up. Everything. Just. Got. Real. Four years ago, Uncle George told me about Voldemort. At that moment, he was like a fictional character to me. I only knew what I heard from Uncle George. He was already weak from when his Killing Curse backfired on Harry, and then he tries it on me. That was his biggest mistake. That's what really did him in. Three years ago, I only heard Harry's description. And he only saw Voldemort's face on the back of Professor Quirrel's head. Two years ago, I saw the young version of Voldemort. Last night, I saw the newly resurrected Voldemort in person. And he's got a plan. I've known that this day would come for four years now. Now it has already happened. And I have no choice but to get serious. Voldemort's back and stronger than ever. So Harry and I have to stick together. Two wands are better than one.
What do these have in common?
They all strengthen Harry and I's relationship somehow.
But, hey, who am I to complain?
I could tell Harry left Dumbledore's office feeling sure of himself. Because that's exactly how I felt. And I could see it in his expression, his posture... his overall aura.
"I guess some goodbyes are in order," Harry said, as he took my hand.
I nodded in agreement and fell into step beside him as he led me to the courtyard. That's where the Durmstrang and Beauxbatons students are leaving from.
They leave in twenty minutes.
Hogwarts Express leaves in an hour.
This eventful year is almost over.
We casually strolled through the halls of Hogwarts together, not really paying attention to the world around us, ignoring the stares of passerbys.
So you can imagine what it was like to finally come back to reality because of someone rudely shouting,
We stopped suddenly as Malfoy came into view.
"I heard the other day that you caught that bloke Derrick cheating on you," he said.
Just hearing those words still stings my heart, but I kept a pokerface on as Malfoy continued.
"I thought I'd finally have a chance with you, but it looks like you're with him now. Guess you really don't know how to pick the good ones, eh?" he teased, looking Harry in the eye as he spoke.
I felt Harry tense up and tighten his grip on my hand.
"As long as I'm here, you'll never get a chance with her," Harry calmly said. His voice was level, but it seemed like it took a lot of effort to keep it that way.
"So, if you were to just suddenly vanish one day - "
"Shut it, Malfoy. Before you say something you'll regret," I spoke up.
I pushed past Malfoy, pulling Harry with me before Harry could lose his temper.
"Can you believe he did that?" Harry mumbled in my ear. "I almost lost control."
"Yeah, but you didn't. You're lucky I pulled you out of there," I said.
"Malfoy is the lucky one," he growled.
I couldn't help but smirk at that one. Nobody better come and start something up again, or I'm afraid I won't be able to pull Harry away quick enough.
Of course, that's just what happened.
"Oh, just look at this," Derrick scowled, eyeing my hand in Harry's.
Ugh, why now?
"You dumped me for this twat?" Derrick said, referring to Harry. "He gets you wrapped up in that tournament and gets Cedric killed, but you left me for him?"
"Voldemort did those things. I wouldn't kill Cedric. Or hurt Chris. Unlike you," Harry said, with a menacing look in his eye.
Derrick, acting like he didn't hear Harry, said, "Listen to him. He's mad. Voldemort was destroyed long ago. You should know that, Chris."
"I was there last night, Derrick. Harry's not crazy, he's telling the truth," I said. "Anyway, I thought I told you to never talk to me again."
"Fine. I'll talk to Potter then," Derrick said, turning to Harry. "You're just her rebound, you know that, right? She would never really want to be with you."
Harry stepped threateningly closer to Derrick. "I think she'd rather be with me than with someone who broke her heart."
"SHE is right here!" I exclaimed, but they both ignored me.
Harry had let go of my hand by now. The hand that originally held mine was reaching instinctively for Harry's wand. His other hand was curling and uncurling into a fist.
"That's what you did," Harry continued. "You broke her heart. Or do you not remember that? Was it not clear that she was breaking up with you?"
Derrick heard the threatening tone in Harry's voice and backed up a bit, much to my surprise.
But he still wouldn't quit. "I remember. But I figured I would have another chance."
You have got to be kidding me.
Harry shook his head in disgust. "You don't deserve her."
I guess Harry came to his senses, and realized that Derrick isn't worth the time and energy it would take to fight with him, because this time he led me away from the waste of space, Derrick.
Derrick isn't worth Harry's time, energy, breath, words...
Derrick isn't worth my tears.
Derrick isn't worth my heart.
I stopped Harry in his tracks and kissed him.
"Thank you," I said, more like whispered, because the moment was so intimate, I couldn't bear to share it with anyone within ear's reach.
He just smiled and hugged me. "All of that reminded me of how lucky I am to have you."
We carried on towards the courtyard, hand in hand, like nothing at all happened in the last five minutes.
Harry is definitely worth my heart.
"Before I leave, I just want to say thank you again, to the both of you," Fleur Delacour, Beauxbatons champion, said to Harry, Ron and I a few minutes before the Beauxbatons' departure. "Harry, you were there to save my sister when I failed to be. Chris and Ron, had you not helped her, she may have drowned!"
"No problem," Ron said rather dreamily, amazed that Fleur was talking to him.
"And may I just say, Harry and Chris, I am very happy for the both of you! You make a beautiful couple!" Fleur exclaimed.
That's the first positive reaction we've gotten!
"Thank you," I blushed.
"You're not... questioning about what happened last night?" Harry asked.
"Well, of course I do not fully understand what happened, but I am not going to question. It is not my business." Fleur said.
We nodded gratefully.
"This is where I must leave you. I wish the both of you good luck, in case I never see you again," she said.
"Good luck to you, Fleur," Harry said.
"Stay safe," I added.
She smiled and blew a kiss as she turned to join her schoolmates.
Hermione joined us shortly after, looking a bit teary-eyed.
"Are you okay, Hermione?" I asked.
"Yes, thank you for asking. I'll miss Viktor, but I'll be just fine," she said.
And that's why I admire Hermione. She's resilient. She's able to move on easily.
Then, the Beauxbatons' carriage rose into the air, pulled by twelve winged horses. It was a magnificent sight, watching the horses fly the airborn carriage up and away, towards the horizon. Almost immediately after, the Durmstrang ship sunk lower and lower into the lake until it was completely submerged. It's amazing that they can travel underwater like that, in an enormous ship.
The Hogwarts students dispersed and most people entered the school to go up to their dormitories and get their luggage ready to leave.
"Everything is going to change now, isn't it?" Hermione asked, looking at the rest of us for an answer.
I'm sure the answer we all want to hear is "No, of course not", but we'd be lying if one of us said it. We weren't sure which of us was going to have to kill the mood, so we awkwardly stood there, looking away or at each other, letting the question linger in our minds.
Harry finally answered after a couple minutes of silence. "Yes, things are going to change."
"But we don't know if it's for the better or the worse," I added.
Ron nodded. "And whatever happens, all four of us will always be friends."
"Of course. We'll all write to each other over the summer, won't we?" Hermione asked.
Harry and Ron rolled their eyes.
"Sure," Harry said.
"Maybe," Ron said.
"I will, Hermione. As much as I can," I said.
Hermione grinned and looked at the boys. "Even if the two of you don't write to me, I will to you!"
I laughed and said, "You're the three best friends that anyone could have!"
We joyously walked arm-in-arm to the Gryffindor Common Room, where we'll go upstairs to our dormitories, gather our luggage, then leave the school for our fourth time on the Hogwarts Express.
I can't wait until I get home to Uncle George! I miss him so much!
And he's got some explaining to do!
Stronger than weak,
evil I seek.
Dark magic shall not break my streak.
Love will prevail,
even if I fail.
And those I oppose will not go free.